Parking shake-up in Fishponds ignores needs of disabled drivers
NEW parking restrictions in Fishponds have excluded disabled drivers from leaving their cars on the high street.
The new rules mean that parking on Fishponds Road is now only possible for traders delivering goods – no longer accommodating blue badge-holding disabled drivers.
The drivers have complained to the council, claiming the changes on the high street have left them feeling ostracised.
The council says it has provided limited short-stay spaces as an alternative, but there are complaints that no designated disabled spaces have been created.
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"The council seems to have completely forgotten that disabled people even exist," said Anne Tooker, who lives in Fishponds.
Mrs Tooker, 68, who uses a wheelchair, claims she has been forced to park in Lidl supermarket, away from the high street, because of the new rules.
Her husband, Ivor, 82, who suffers from arthritis, is now faced with pushing his wife up the high street to do their daily shopping.
The elderly couple have started shopping elsewhere because of the strain it puts on both of them.
Mrs Tooker has contacted the council about the problems the new changes have caused, but has received no reply.
She told the Post: "There must be other people out there like us who have been totally marginalised by the council's changes. It really puts a stop on my life. I don't know how many others there are like us, but it appears the council aren't listening and they are not taking any notice of the fact that we are here."
She added: "If they just removed some of the stripes from the curb and changed a small part back to how it was before, there would be no problem.
"But as it is, we can never find a space so now we shop somewhere where we can get closer to the shops.
"I just can't help but think about how expensive all these changes must be – only to restrict people like us."
Bristol City Council's Kate Hartas told the Post that the changes were made after traders found delivery difficult on the busy high street.
She said: "The complaints we have received from disabled people suggest that the problem is lack of dedicated parking spaces for blue badge holders.
"A review is looking to rectify this and make more specific spaces reserved for disabled people."