Concerns over ‘awful’ caravans and motorhomes parked along Worthing seafront road

Residents of Regis Court and surrounding apartment buildings delivered a petition signed by more than 100 people to Worthing Borough Council on Tuesday April 5, following growing concerns over caravan parking along West Parade.

Phil Abbott, a resident of Regis Court, gave a speech in favor of parking restrictions along the road at the council’s plenary meeting.

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Mr Abbott claimed vehicles had been ‘dumped long and short term’ along the road, including ‘caravans and utility vehicles’.

Concerns have been raised over campervans and caravans parked on Worthing seafront

He said some residents have reported that a number of caravans are “permanently inhabited”, with some occupants using drains “to dispose of their personal waste”.

“It impacts local residents, tourism and the wider Worthing economy,” Mr Abbott said.

“What does the council propose to deal with the situation?”

West Parade is outside Worthing’s controlled parking areas, but is covered by a Traffic Control Order (TRO) put in place by West Sussex County Council in 2020.

The TRO has permanently banned caravans from parking between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m. on the north side of West Parade, between its junctions with Bernard Road and Wallace Avenue.

Both sides of Wallace Avenue are also covered, between its junction with West Parade and its junction with Latimer Road.

The restriction also applies to Anscombe Road between its junction with West Parade and its junction with Anscombe Close, and Bernard Road 125 meters north of its junction with West Parade.

A letter from the WSCC outlining the reasons for the TRO reads: “At their November 2018 meeting, the Worthing County Local Committee elected to prioritize an overnight parking ban request for campgrounds. -cars on the roads above.

“This was in response to complaints that motorhomes are parked for long periods on these roads and allegations that in some cases they are used as accommodation.”

But Mr Abbott said caravans and similar vehicles had simply ‘migrated’ to other areas.

“Obviously, at the time, no thought was given to where these vehicles would migrate to,” he said.

“In fact, all the order did was run the vans and issue east along West Parade, where there were no active parking restrictions.”

He claimed that – while the TRO was implemented “quickly” and vehicles were given parking tickets – vehicles simply moved to where they are not restricted and he said the app ” was not carried out regularly”.

“West Parade leading to Marine Parade used to be an attractive main highway leading into Worthing,” Mr Abbott said, “That is no longer the case.”

“These parked vehicles are an eyesore, can be extremely dangerous to residents and reduce the parking space available for visitors to Worthing.”

Worthing Borough Council leader Kevin Jenkins sympathized with affected residents but said action would have to be taken by the WSCC as the matter falls outside the borough council’s remit.

“I think we’re all aware of the history of the West Parade issue and vehicular traffic and the impact of parking on residents,” Mr Jenkins said.

“For a number of years there have been tremendous efforts to resolve it and that resolution has not always been successful.

“Responsibility rests with West Sussex County Council as the statutory road authority.

“They are responsible for setting parking policies, street enforcement policies, which Worthing Borough Council is contracted to enforce.

“We can only apply within the framework they set for us.”

Mr Jenkins added: ‘It is doable, it just depends on the tenacity of the county council.’

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