The recent trading ban on Winford Parking and Rental has focussed public attention on longstanding airport-related parking issues. But, if you live in one of the ‘airport parishes’ — Butcombe, Felton, Redhill, Regil, Winford, or Wrington — chances are these problems have been on your radar for years. BAPCoG is a community organization with strong links to every one of those parishes. Its small, dedicated membership may be the best hope of getting an official response to your concerns.
The Bristol Airport Parking Communities Group came into existence three years ago with the twin objectives of reducing illegal parking around Bristol Airport and encouraging both the Airport and North Somerset Council to take a more balanced approach to parking issues.
BAPCoG’s Gillian Taylor Moss provided some details about the group’s work.
“In the affected parishes, low-level parking abuses are an ongoing concern,” Moss told us. “It’s technically legal to park any vehicle on the public road, provided it’s licensed and insured… but leaving a car unattended in a narrow Somerset lane for two weeks is likely to cause problems. We regularly see cars parked in side streets, left outside pubs and schools, even blocking the driveways of private houses. It’s a legitimate concern for local people, even if the police aren’t interested.”
Moss also spoke of the group’s campaign against the region’s illegal parking businesses, many of which hide unsafe working practices behind slick websites and social media presences. “We see many cases of cars sustaining damage while parked in open fields or on public roads for weeks at a stretch, and there are horror stories about underage, uninsured drivers being charged with parking duties,” said Moss. “We’d always recommend drivers using these services to check exactly where their vehicle is going to be parked, and by whom.”
Moss observes that those affected by parking issues — residents and drivers alike — have relatively few means of redress. “We’ve all had a giggle about the car that was parked off the A38 for two weeks… and ended up shrinkwrapped by irate locals. [See main image.] But the reality is that, there’s little or nothing you can do about a badly-parked vehicle if you act alone. Contacting us is a much smarter move than reaching for the shrinkwrap or the spraycan. We’re building a base of evidence for long-term action, and our representation on the parish councils makes us your best chance of sorting things out.”
BAPCoG has a website under development and maintains a public e-mail service via firstname.lastname@example.org.