Schools can do more to ease congestion pain

From Jane Simmond s letter (H&H April 5) it would appear that the efforts of the schools have almost single-handedly resolved the school run problem. I wonder whether Ms Simmonds includes UCS Junior School amongst her group? UCS is holding an Auction of

From Jane Simmond's letter (H&H April 5) it would appear that the efforts of the schools have almost single-handedly resolved the school run problem.

I wonder whether Ms Simmonds includes UCS Junior School amongst her group?

UCS is holding an Auction of Promises on June 24, and is auctioning: 'the chance to bid for a car park space at the Junior Branch - slap bang in the middle of Hampstead'.

If this school is working to resolve this problem, it seems incongruous that they should be adding to the problem by encouraging car parking in Hampstead - most likely to a parent who does not live in Hampstead.


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I believe this item may have now been withdrawn - possibly in reaction to negative editorial coverage.

This is a specific example of the failure of some schools to embrace the issue in a meaningful way. There are other general examples:

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1. Why have parking dispensation vouchers been issued to new parents, when it was agreed in 2004 that this would not happen.

2. Pupil numbers have increased significantly since 2004, exacerbating the problem.

3. Why is it not clear in all the literature of all the schools that there is no provision for parking adjacent to the schools.

But, critically, why should one user group - school run parents - be treated preferentially to any other user group? I can think of various user groups who would like such preferential treatment.

These include those transporting the elderly who do not have disabled classification, those attending hospitals and clinics with the young or the infirm and those using Hampstead shops and services who are unable to park legally.

The list is endless. Schools are businesses like any other. There is no valid reason to prioritise this group of business users over any other.

Residents are prepared to approach this problem in a reasonable way and seek compromises. Until the schools behave in similar vein, this will not be productive. Unfortunately, UCS's example is a very poor one.

Jo Konrad

Farokh Khorooshi

Wedderburn Road, NW3

STAG has for some time now been using the blackmail tactic of ''either give us free parking permits or we will create chaos in the area''.

My wife and I walk our children to school and are faced with the 4x4 menace daily (STAG representatives included).

Our elected councillors should not give in to this kind of bullying tactic.

STAG have publicly stated that if the permits were to be withdraw in line with the agreed council policy, the car driving parents will bring the whole area to a congested standstill.

Here is question for all to consider.

If a gang of petty criminal were to come to the council chambers and ask the council to ask the residents not to lock up their cars because ''we will have to break the glass to get in,'' would our councillors go along with it?

STAG are by their action giving the independent schools in this area a very bad name indeed.

Sensible and law abiding parents in this area are being intimidated by this small gang of selfish and self centred individuals on a daily basis.

STAG does not represent all the local parents in NW3.

Peter & Lora Simmonds

Fitzjohn's Avenue, NW3

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