No new car parking for church users

November 26, 2008 10:58 PM
By Piers Meyler in Brentwood Gazette
Cllr Ross Carter

Cllr Ross Carter

PROPOSALS to turn housing land into car parking spaces in order to ease congestion outside a popular church have been rejected.

Church user groups have become the pest of some residents who say they have to battle with inconsiderate parking.

Cars parked along Greenshaw by St George's Church in Brentwood led residents to call for some form of parking restriction in a bid to alleviate the problem.

They claim it's largely parents of Brownies, Guides and other church groups causing the sometimes "dangerous" situations.

St George's Church in Ongar Road typically attracts between 40 and 100 worshipers and hall users.

With up to 60 cars regularly requiring parking spaces - and only 16 able to be accommodated in the church car park - residents living around the building complain that overspill traffic blocks their drives.

But proposals put to the borough council to develop land behind the church off Greenshaw have now been dropped, due to high costs and inconclusive consultation responses.

Of the total 29 responses received from residents and church users, 11 were in favour - mostly residents - and 18 against.

Cllr Ross Carter, a member of Brentwood council's housing panel, said: "The results of the consultation exercise were pretty inconclusive.

"I think this will only serve to shift parking further down the road.

"Certainly next to the Greenshaw flats, and along Costead Manor Road, there are horrendous parking problems already.

"Although the church is being very helpful, it would be quite unfair to make them pay for this. People have to park somewhere."

Fr Garry Jenkins, the vicar of St George's Church, said: "I cannot comment until I hear back from the council.

"But in the meantime we are putting white marks on the car park to try to get more cars in there."