TRADERS and residents are hoping that problems which have arisen since residents’ parking schemes were installed last autumn will be addressed in a council review.

The zone covering Bedminster East – which stretches to Bath Road – began operation in September, while the Southville area began in November.

Both were supposed to be reviewed after six months.

There are still no firm dates for when the review will start. But residents in the zones can expect a postcard through their letterbox asking their views in May or June, a council spokesperson told the Voice.

A petition calling for the removal of parking zones across Bristol looks set for a debate at a full council meeting after passing the 3,500 signature threshold. It now has more than 4,150.

While many residents are happy that commuters can no longer leave cars in their roads all day, others say they still can’t park near their home even though they have a permit.

Others in the areas outside the zones say commuters are now causing congestion elsewhere. The area affected is large – it includes roads to the south of North Street, Windmill Hill and Ashton Vale and elsewhere. Even South Liberty Lane is now lined with parked cars. 

Some traders say they have been badly affected by RPS.

“I reckon trade is down by about half since the restrictions came in,” said Derek Knapman of hardware shop Lion Stores in North Street, Southville.

Though there is a parking bay outside his shop, it is usually full, and customers can no longer stop to pick up big items like firewood, said Derek. “People say to me, ‘I’m sorry I haven’t been in, but I couldn’t park,” he said.

Adrian Harrris, who runs the Butt butcher’s shops in North Street and East Street, says takings are down by 25 per cent in both.

He wants a return to one or two hours of free parking. Bigger signs should also make it clearer that the first half hour of parking is free, he said.

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