Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Parking Spaces and Local Democracy - The System At Work

More parking for residents, less room for lorries
Our corner of Shepherd's Bush recently got a brand-new residents' parking bay. A small victory, and a modest benefit for us locals. Actually, it isn't that small. Not only does it mean that more of us can park in the street we live in, but it means that other people can't. In particular, the big lorries that used to park up and run their engines while they ate their lunch can't hang out like they used to. Our neighbourhood just got a little bit less noisy, and a little bit better. So how did this minor victory come about? Thank the Council, and our local Residents' Association.
Hammersmith Town Hall - But How Does It Work? Photo: Wikipedia
Part of the challenge of living in any neighbourhood is figuring out how the sytem works. Who makes things happen at the Council? Who can you petition, and on what basis? In many ways, local decisions have much more impact on ordinary people than the important-sounding stuff that goes on at Westminster. Parking spaces, rubbish collection, the phasing of traffic lights - this is the stuff of local democracy.

Our new parking space was championed by Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler, and supported by LBHF's parking supremo Christiaan Uys (pronounced "Ace"), who kindly pressed the Council's machinery into action on behalf of our residents.

In the end, the system worked. So, heartfelt thanks from the Macfarlane Road and Hopgood St Residents' Association to Victoria and Christian who, between them, have made our corner of The Bush just a bit more liveable.


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