Public Space Protection Orders (PSPO) could be introduced at sites in Richmondshire where lorry drivers’ overnight parking is a persistent issue following the “success” of an antisocial behaviour crackdown at Leeming Bar.
North Yorkshire County Council’s Richmondshire constituency committee heard the authority was working with Highways England and district councils to coordinate efforts to stop overnight parking in undesignated areas impacting on the lives of residents and traders.
Officers told the meeting a PSPO scheme which Hambleton District Council introduced at Leeming Bar Industrial Estate two years ago had proved successful.
The scheme means any driver remaining in a vehicle within the restricted area for any period of time between 7am and 7pm could be handed an £80 fine, reducing to £40 if paid within 14 days.
The order was launched at the estate, which features a number of the country’s leading food manufacturing firms, after complaints the area was being used as “an open toilet”.
The move sparked controversy with numerous hauliers claiming issues on the estate had been exacerbated by a lack of overnight parking for lorries, and the order would simply push drivers to park overnight elsewhere.
The meeting was told monitoring of the PSPO had shown there had been a reduction in the number of lorry drivers using the area to sleep overnight, with the number of leaflets advising of the PSPO, issued to drivers per patrol reducing from a combined average of 4.1 in 2019/20 to 1.3 in 2020/21.
Councillors heard the PSPO would be reviewed next year which may result in its extension and the district council has previously indicated the scheme could be introduced at Thirsk Industrial Estate, where residents and traders have also complained about overnight parking.
Councillor Helen Grant told members the Catterick Garrison, Colburn and Brough St Giles area had seen “dozens and dozens and dozens of vehicles parked on the highway with the resultant human waste that comes from that for many many years”.
She questioned whether the county council believed Public Space Protection Orders would be a good solution for other areas, highlighting the example of Richmondshire District Council’s lorry park at Colburn, which has no facilities and space for up to 20 lorries.
Cllr Grant said: “On a general basis there’s anything up to 30 or 40 vehicles around the business park and industrial estate, so this is not just something that Leeming experienced, it’s all over the place.”
Officers said the Leeming Bar scheme had proved successful, but it would be essential to ensure banning drivers from parking in one area overnight did not lead to them parking in another area nearby instead.
One officer told the meeting the authority would investigate ongoing concerns about overnight parking.
He said: “It is about applying the right solution to the right location. Clearly the Public Space Protection Order is having some benefit to it. There is a potential for further PSPOs within the county. The success of this one shows that it potentially has got merit in other locations. There may also be other measures, within our powers as a highways authority to introduce on that as well.”