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Suffolk County Council is consulting on proposed changes to residents’ parking zones in Bury St Edmunds including extending the hours





A community leader is ‘absolutely delighted’ that long-awaited plans to help ease residents’ parking problems are moving forward again – but says she will only believe it when it happens.

Suffolk County Council is currently consulting on proposals to makes changes to the operational periods of residents’ parking in all 12 zones within Bury St Edmunds.

It would see the hours extended to 8pm, affecting Mondays to Saturdays, but where residents’ parking also operates on Sundays there would be no change. The operational period of ‘Limited Waiting’ restrictions would remain the same.

Vivien Gainsborough Foot, chairman of the Churchgate Area Association, in Westgate Street, which is within the Zone D residents’ parking zone. Picture: Mark Westley
Vivien Gainsborough Foot, chairman of the Churchgate Area Association, in Westgate Street, which is within the Zone D residents’ parking zone. Picture: Mark Westley

In Zone D, which covers the historic heart of the town, further changes are proposed including the creation of new residents’ parking bays, alterations to the length of some existing parking bays and new lengths of ‘No Waiting at Any Time’.

The Churchgate Area Association (CAA) has been campaigning for many years on tackling the parking problems in Zone D.

Its chairman Vivien Gainsborough Foot said: “We are absolutely delighted, but this has been going on since September 2014. We have been so frustrated. It’s been 10 years now.”

Whiting Street, in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Robert Robertson
Whiting Street, in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Robert Robertson

She added: “I’m not going to believe it until white lines are actually down on the road.”

Her understanding of the proposals is that an extra 30 parking spaces would be created in Zone D, which is what the group had been asking for, although the county council told us they could not currently provide an accurate number of new spaces.

Mrs Gainsborough Foot also said extending residents’ parking to 8pm would really help them find somewhere to park.

Following yesterday’s meeting of the town council’s planning, licensing and finance committee, which considered the proposals, town clerk Jodie Budd said the committee was happy with everything, but not the changes in Whiting Street apart from the extension to the hours.

Mrs Gainsborough Foot said she was ‘disappointed’ to hear the committee’s feedback on Whiting Street, adding: “We need as many spaces as we can possibly get.”

After the meeting, committee member Cllr Donna Higgins said of the county council’s proposals for residents’ parking in Bury: “I think the timings are very supportive of residents’ needs and it’s reflective of what a lot of residents have said they need.”

Cllr Donna Higgins said extending the hours of residents’ parking was what residents said they needed
Cllr Donna Higgins said extending the hours of residents’ parking was what residents said they needed

The changes would also see residents’ parking start from 8am, which is earlier than is currently the case in some locations.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk Highways, which is part of Suffolk County Council, said: “The Zone D parking scheme proposes changes to increase parking opportunity for residents, whilst creating greater parking opportunity for residents in all other zones, by extending the period of residents’ parking on Mondays to Saturdays.

“We are currently consulting with local councillors, the emergency services and other organisations that represent affected parties.

“We intend to formally advertise late May 2024 when notices will be displayed on site and in the local press for anyone who wishes to provide a formal representation.”