By Councillor Chris Cornell / Latest News / / 0 Comments

Whitstable is desperately in need of a new parking plan. When your Labour councillors were elected in 2019 we promised one, but in two years it has been clear that there is very little appetite at Kent County Council for change. Kent County Council haven’t published a strategic review of traffic in our town since the late 1990s and when the did, they later reneged on the decision.

One of the things city councillors can do is control who parks where – installing residents parking and drawing yellow lines in problem areas to alleviate jams. As such local councillors are embarking on an online survey of residents in the Conservation area to explore their appetite for residents parking.

Residents parking isn’t perfect but it does act as a deterrent for visitors to park in quieter residential roads. This model (in place in Island Wall and Station Road) sees residents in a designated area pay a small fee per year (currently £70 a year) to ensure only residents can park for any substantial period of time (normally over 2 hours) on the road outside their house. It doesn’t guarantee a parking space but does ease congestion as second cars receive a lower priority in allocation of any permits and the number and price of guest tickets (under which holiday let tenants could park on street) can be regulated. If the number of people parking on the road drops then some people may feel able to give up expensive off street parking permits which have been targeted by this council for substantial increases in the past.

Last year councillors investigated residents parking in Clifton Road and Westcliff after resident’s contacted us. We carried out a door to door survey and ultimately concluded that there wasn’t a substantial amount of public support for the scheme there. The council will, quite rightly, only introduce the scheme in an area where upward of 75% of residents indicate that they are in favour. We are now turning our attention to see if there is interest in the conservation area between Cromwell Road and Harbour Street – this area has a real problem with parking and could be redesigned.

We don’t believe that because something is difficult we shouldn’t try to solve it. So now we need you help. You can:

  1. Fill out our parking survey at www.parkinginwhitstable.com
  2. Email us with your ideas for yellow lines to [email protected]gov.uk. You pop in for a chat with us at surgery on Friday 24th September, 9.30 – 12 at the Horsebridge or Thursday 7th October, 3-4.30 in the Umbrella Garden

  3. Attend our public meeting on the issue on Tuesday 23rd November, 7.30 at Whitstable Umbrella. We aim to have representatives of Canterbury City Council, Kent County Council and the Highways Agency attending.

By Councillor Chris Cornell / Latest News / 0 Comments
In light of recent comments made by our MP on the issue of trans rights Canterbury Labour Councillors made the following statement today.
 
Canterbury Labour Councillors are proud to support Pride Canterbury and take part in its parade and events tomorrow. We celebrate with all the rich variety of the LGBTQI community.
 
We understand that the issue of gender self identification is a deeply challenging one for some people.
 
It is Labour Party policy that all trans people have the right to self identify and we are actively campaigning to update the Gender Recognition Act to reflect this. We respect the rights of trans men and women to be who they are.
By Councillor Chris Cornell / Latest News / / 0 Comments

George Caffery has tendered his resignation as Labour councillor for Gorrell Ward. That is effective immediately and will trigger a by-election for the seat at a date to be determined. 

 

George was elected to the council in 2019 along with Chris Cornell and Val Kenny, who continue to serve local residents. A lifelong resident of the ward, George was always a passionate advocate for Whitstable and its wonderful environment, and the loss of his commitment to the Town is a significant blow for the Council.

 

“Being a councillor can be a stressful and at times frustrating job, particularly in opposition. George has worked hard for the residents despite some very challenging personal situations.” said Councillor Val Kenny. “But he was increasingly frustrated with the authoritarian route being taken by the Conservatives which lead to his pleas being ignored. In this end George has decided to show his dissatisfaction with this council and its policies by taking the difficult decision to step down.”.

 

Councillor Chris Cornell said “George’s passion for Whitstable was never in doubt but this job can be all consuming. Not one of us enjoys having to explain to residents how decisions which often go against their best interests are voted through time and time again by the ruling group. For me personally, these discussions just strengthen my resolve – this council doesn’t speak for many of our residents and it is our job to remind them of that.”

 

Leader of the Labour Group Dave Wilson thanked George for his service and friendship. “We wish George the best of luck in the future and hope he has more time to spend sailing and with the family. Labour believes in preserving and improving the best that Whitstable has to offer to both residents and businesses. We owe it to our voters to attend Council meetings, speak up for the Town and hold the ruling Tories to account at every turn. We will be fielding a dynamic candidate at the by-election to complement our existing strong team in Whitstable.”

 

Details of the by-election will be published by the City Council’s Returning Officer in due time.

 

In the meantime, George’s casework will be picked up by Councillors Chris Cornell and Valerie Kenny, to whom all future resident enquiries should be made.