Councillors and cathedral bosses are parking vandals

PUBLISHED: 16:30 01 June 2006 | UPDATED: 13:30 04 May 2010

I AM writing to express my alarm at the proposal to extend the Broad Street car park especially in view of Cllr Brown s misleading remarks reported in the Ely Standard. It would appear that the local business faction is, yet again, attempting to exert it

I AM writing to express my alarm at the proposal to extend the Broad Street car park especially in view of Cllr Brown's misleading remarks reported in the Ely Standard.

It would appear that the local business faction is, yet again, attempting to exert it malign influence on council members.

Cllr Brown claims that a referendum would show a majority in favour of the proposal. I have to agree, however, with the results of the Standard's own research and having spoken to a considerable number of my acquaintances, I find that they are appalled that people who are elected to represent the views of the general public should even contemplate such a foolishly irresponsible action.

I can, however, understand the motive behind the local traders position. They are simply putting their narrow self-interest before the general well-being of the city of Ely and its residents.

I note that the Ely Traders' Association not only wants the Broad Street extension, but also the more sensible development of Angel Drove. Where will they stop?

Cllr Brown claims that shops are closing, but as a very frequent user of Ely shopping facilities, I have not noticed this to any great degree.

Indeed, during the five years that I have been resident in Ely, I have noticed that there are now more useful outlets. It is in the nature of commerce that some shops close and others take their place.

This happens all over the country and Ely is no exception. Shops close because they are unable to supply what the public want.

I find the response of the cathedral authorities quite extraordinary. It appears that people who should be at the forefront of environmental responsibility are actually happy to join forces with councillors to destroy yet another green area.

There are alternatives. Parking charges should be put on existing car parks. Perhaps £1 for the first hour, increasing after this. The Barton Road car park needs a time-limit.

To stop parking on the roadside, double yellow lines should be increased or parking meters installed. These systems operate in other towns and cites. Expansion of the under-used Cresswells car park should be considered.

The council should also put its collective weight behind the Angel Drove park-and-ride proposal. If traffic could be funnelled off the A142 and A10 to Angel Drove it would greatly ease the pressure on the existing car parks and might go some way to appeasing the demands of local tradespeople.

Ely still remains an attractive, small city but the increasing demands of an unelected few, I fear, result in areas of the city being destroyed. If the ill-conceived Broad Street extension is allowed to go ahead, where next?

Much has been said about youngsters supposedly vandalising the city, but this is generally very limited. The real danger comes from the blinkered, partisan opinion of some local councillors backed by the reckless opportunism of the cathedral authorities and the short-sighted views held by the local trades people. They are the real vandals.

LG THOMAS

Chelmer Way

Ely

I REALLY cannot believe that the Conservative group on East Cambridgeshire District Council is proposing to create extra spaces in Ely's Broad Street car park by expanding into the bottom of Cherry Hill Park.

Cherry Hill Park is an historic green space and has been a part of Ely's heritage for hundreds of years. Yet the Conservatives are proposing to toss our heritage aside for a measly 59 car parking spaces. Do they not realise if you concrete over land it is gone forever?

Although I understand that there is a problem with a lack of car parking capacity in Ely, this really is not the solution. Put simply, it's the wrong location.

MATTHEW GILBEY

Wissey Way

Ely

I WRITE to voice my concerns about the proposal to build a car park on cathedral land at Cherry Hill. This historic green space is not wasteland and should under no circumstances by sacrificed to car parking.

If additional parking was created for commuters travelling by train, a large number of spaces, both on the road and in the car parks around Broad Street, would be freed up. This has to be a more sensible plan.

EMMA ELSEY by email

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