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Tuesday, 02 September 2014

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County sets aside £6,000 to ease parking in village

A £6,000 cash boost is set to alleviate parking problems in Distington.

By Sarah Robinson

Cumbria County Council is giving the money to Distington Surgery to enable it to rent nearby land and provide more parking spaces.

Councillors heard that a lack of parking has been an issue at the surgery for many years. Patients and staff park on nearby roads and pavements, causing problems for motorists, particularly on the junction of Main Street and Hinnings Road.

Dr Eric Bater, of Distington Surgery, said: “The money will be extremely useful. We will use it to help alleviate current car parking problems.”

He said the surgery recognises parking is an issue. A total of 27 staff work there, including seven doctors, but there are only five car parking spaces available on the site for staff and patients.

There has also been an increase in footfall of patients.

More parking spaces will “provide a medium- to long-term solution”, he added.

The estimated date of completion is March next year.

The plan for increased parking is being supported by Distington Parish Council. Sue Hayman, county councillor for the Howgate ward, also supports the venture as she has received complaints from constituents about the traffic, particularly at the junction near the surgery.

She said: “It’s making the junction very dangerous. If we’ve got a dangerous junction and something happens, it would just be appalling.

“The surgery is exploring a couple of different avenues for providing car parking.”

The funding will help the surgery to “kick start” its plans, she added. The money has been awarded from Coun Hayman’s share of the Local Members Fund (each county councillor has a pot of money to spend on projects in his or her patch).

Constituents have raised other concerns about motorists speeding and driving badly on the old trunk road from Howgate to Distington, and also at Swallow Hill. Coun Hayman said traffic monitoring is set to be put in place to look at these issues.

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