Major parking in changes in Lytham and St. Annes - including for motorhome users

Motorhomes will be banned from parking overnight on the promenades at Lytham and St. Annes from this summer.
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Lancashire County Council’s cabinet has approved a series of new parking rules for the neighbouring Fylde coast towns, including one which outlaws the vehicles - also known as motor caravans - between 6pm and 8am.

It comes after what a report to cabinet members said were “years [of] complaints from residents” about the homes-on-wheels reducing the spaces available for other visitors and residents - along with their ”cumulative visual impact” on the coastline.

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The document also referred to the “antisocial behaviour of a minority of motor caravan users”, who dispose of liquid waste down drains and in park areas.

Some of the parking changes comign to Lytham and St. Annes have proved controversial (image: Google)Some of the parking changes comign to Lytham and St. Annes have proved controversial (image: Google)
Some of the parking changes comign to Lytham and St. Annes have proved controversial (image: Google)

However, in spite of the historical clamour for action, some locals told a County Hall consultation into the plans that the prohibition risked pushing the problem onto side streets or town centre roads off the seafront which were even more unsuitable for the vehicles to park up.

Several respondents called for the introduction of a residents’ parking scheme to address the issue, but the county council said it has already considered all such requests that have been made for the area - and stressed that any fresh ones would have to meet its strict criteria before any permit systems could be introduced.

HIghways officers also said there was “no evidence” to suggest that motorhome drivers would seek alternative on-street parking elsewhere in and around Lytham and St. Annes.

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The motor caravan ban will start in Ansdell Road South in Lytham and run along Inner Promenade, South Promenade and North Promenade, terminating in Todmorden Road in St. Annes. It will also include King Edward Avenue, Fairlawn Road and Seafield Road in Lytham.

The restriction is expected to come into force by early May, although an exact date has not yet been confirmed.

Objections received to the prohibition claimed that it was unfair to target motorhomes, because - like any vehicle parked up along the promenade - their occupants were likely to be visitors to the area, who should be welcomed and not discriminated against. It was also noted that the number of motor caravan owners had increased since the onset of the pandemic, meaning local authorities should be exploring how best to accommodate them.

The meeting at which the rules were agreed heard that Fylde Council, with which the county authority has worked closely on the plans, has increased the amount of off-road motorhome parking available in the borough - including at its Fairhaven Road car park - with further options now being considered.


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Other parking changes given the green light by cabinet members include reducing the current 18-hour waiting limit on Inner Promenade to four hours and correspondingly extending the current two-hour time limit on South Promenade- in order to ensure a turnover of available on-street parking options for visitors.

However, some of the 353 people who responded to the consultation warned that the reduced waiting time around Fairhaven Lake would hit local businesses, because “visitors do not come to the seaside for only four hours - [they] often spend the day in the area”.

The proposed limits, it was claimed, would “provide insufficient time for families to spend the day enjoying the facilities like mini golf, the splash park, beaches and arcades, or walk into the town to have a look around and have some lunch”.

There was also a warning that the plans would either reduce the number of tourists coming into the area or clog up the inner streets of the two towns. The risk of congestion caused by people moving their vehicles as they reached their parking time limit - and then circulating around the area looking for a new space - was also highlighted.

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Meanwhile, hoteliers warned of the impact on guests and staff of a reduction in waiting times within easy reach of their facilities - and how it could potentially have a “devastating effect” on the local hotel business.

In response, highways officials said in a report to cabinet members: “The proposals are being introduced to ensure a turnover of available on-street parking options, enabling shorter stays closer to the main areas of attraction to encourage a greater turnover of visitors in these areas. There are unrestricted areas further along the promenade and a number of public car parks that offer areas for visitors wishing to stay for longer periods of time.

“The proposals should increase footfall, by increasing the turn-over of parking spaces, enabling more visitors to visit the area.

“There is unlimited parking along Inner Promenade from Fairhaven Road Car Park to St. Paul's Avenue. The time limit along Fairhaven Lake is to encourage a turnover of visitors through the day to enable more customers to visit the tourist area and businesses.

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“The four-hour time limited area has been restricted to beside Fairhaven Lake as this is this area’s main tourist destination. Other areas are proposed to be unrestricted to enable those who wish to stay longer to have alternative parking further away from the main tourist area.

“The proposals include a two-hour limit along South Promenade from Fairhaven Road To East Bank Road with a current two-hour limit already in place from East Bank Road to Beach Road. Increasing the two-hour limit along this stretch of road, which is beside the area's primary tourist attractions, will encourage a greater turnover of visitors who wish to stay for shorter periods. Long stay parking is available on the car parks and further along the promenade.”

Meanwhile, Lancashire County Council leader Phillippa Williamson acknowledged that the plans had proved a “sensitive issue” in the area - and that she had been lobbied about them personally.

Cabinet member for highways and transport Rupert Swarbrick said the feedback had been “mainly positive”.

“I’m confident that this order will do what it is intended to do, “ he added.