Council urged to hear parking permit appeals after woman says she walks through Kelvingrove Park at night

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Parking bosses are being urged to hear appeals over rejected bids for permits after a young woman revealed she often ends up walking through Kelvingrove Park alone at night.

Labour’s Jill Brown believes council officers are “acting as judge and jury” on parking permit decisions, following complaints from citizens who are struggling to park close to their homes.

‘So dangerous’

One Hillhead resident, a 26-year-old teacher, who asked not to be named, said she often can’t get parked on her street as most spaces are for permit holders.

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Instead, she has to leave her car 20 minutes away from her flat and walk through Kelvingrove Park on her own after work, which is “so dangerous”.

The woman has been forced to walk through Kelvingrove Park.The woman has been forced to walk through Kelvingrove Park.
The woman has been forced to walk through Kelvingrove Park. | Shutterstock

“I feel as though if something were to happen as I walk through the park, it would be ‘why did she do that?’”

The woman, who has lived in her flat for eight years, was refused a parking permit because the lease for her car is not in her own name.

She said her stepdad helped her pick out the vehicle and the lease is in his name, which the council has said is against its rules.

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“It’s my car but I didn’t know what I was doing in terms of the best deals. He organised it for me but I pay for it, I don’t think he’s ever driven it.”

The woman said the application process has been “incredibly frustrating”. “I feel as though they feel like I’m at it — like I’m trying to cheat the system.”

She added she has a “stressful job”, especially during the pandemic, and has to deal with “this every single night when I get home”.

Cllr Brown said the woman has confirmation from her stepdad that the car belongs to her in “everything but the DVLA records”, but she has been told she “needs to lease the car from a leasing company before they will accept that it is her car”.

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‘Fair system’

The Partick East/Kelvindale councillor has called on parking bosses to put residents first when it comes to issuing permits. “Residents deserve a clear, transparent and fair system,” she said.

“I was disappointed to find that council officials are able to change the criteria for issuing parking permits without notice and with no appeals process.

Council officials are acting as judge and jury in deciding who to allocate permits to.

“Residents have enough to contend with without having to fight with the council to buy a parking permit which lets them park near their home. This situation needs to be sorted.”

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What has the council said?

But a council spokesman said eligibility rules for resident parking permits are “well established” and “intended to ensure parking zones are managed appropriately”.

“Applicants are expected to provide proof that the vehicle they use is registered at their address or a formal leasing arrangement is in place.

“In this case, the application was declined as the vehicle being used is not registered at the resident’s address and no formal leasing arrangement is in place.”

Cllr Brown’s calls come just weeks after her colleague, Cllr Maggie McTernan, urged Cllr Anna Richardson, city convener for sustainability and carbon reduction, to waive parking charges for charity workers.

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She said two thirds of workers for charities and voluntary groups in Scotland are women and many are required to work late at night.

Cllr McTernan wants “increased” charges due to the introduction of parking controls to be dropped or cut for these staff.

However, Cllr Richardson warned any waiver could reduce the impact of a parking control zone, which are often introduced to tackle extensive commuter parking.

She agreed to meet with Cllr McTernan but said a precedent should not be set lightly.

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