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Marlow mayor hits out at paid-for parking consultation

Plans for paid-for parking in the centre of Marlow have been presented to the public in a ‘misleading’ way, according to the town’s mayor.

Dozens of residents attended a meeting in Sir William Borlase’s Grammar School, in West Street, on Thursday, February 15, to consult with officers and councillors from Buckinghamshire County Council (BCC) about the proposals.

As well as introducing paid-for parking, the county council is also proposing some changes to yellow lines in the town.

The plans are opposed by Marlow Town Council, which gathered 7,500 petition signatures against the proposals.

Marlow town mayor Cllr Jocelyn Towns expressed her dissatisfaction with the county council’s consultation approach.

“Unfortunately, the BCC presentation was confusing,” she said. “Officers had the incorrect

information and were misleading residents.

“In particular, including the yellow lines in the parking consultation has really clouded the consultation.”

The mayor said she has written to the county’s cabinet member for transportation, Cllr Mark Shaw (Con, Chesham), and parking officer Ian Thomas to outline the flaws in the consultation.

Cllr Towns added: “We have made it clear to BCC that the issue for us, and for at least 7,500 local residents, is the plan to impose paid-for parking in the centre of Marlow.

“We believe it would be detrimental to the success of the town, discriminate against the less able and discourage visitors, amongst other things.

“But we have no issue with changes to the yellow lines which are on corners and are for safety reasons.”

Martin Blunkell, chairman of Marlow Society, said: “The BCC position is based on assumptions, not statistically valid or proven information.

“They are saying that if we have better enforcement there will be better turnover and we asked, ‘how do you prove that?’ But they can’t. I was there all day [on Thursday] and not one person said they were in favour of the principle of paid-for parking.”

Bucks County Council had not responded for a request for comment at the time of going to press.

The consultation continues until Saturday, March 10.

Residents and visitors to the town are being urged to have their say at https://democracy.

buckscc.gov.uk/mgConsultationDisplay.aspx?ID=5348

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