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Petition to open Wellington car park set to be submitted to council as support grows

By Rory Smith | Wellington | News | Published:

A petition to open a car park to ease congestion near a widely-used public space in Wellington has gained more than 140 signatures.

Paul Kalinauckas at the car park in Wellington

The document calling for the car park of the changing rooms at Bowring District Park to open was set to be submitted to Telford & Wrekin Council on Monday, which would allow the issue to be raised at an upcoming council cabinet meeting.

Started by frequent park visitor Paul Kalinauckas, the petition had 141 signatures as of Sunday.

The 30-space car park is usually used by those hiring the pavilion or changing rooms but with Covid-19 restrictions keeping these facilities closed, residents using the park, its cafe and nearby tennis courts, which are currently open, have called for a review.

Mr Kalinauckas said cars lining nearby streets have made driving around the park "like dodgems".

Other residents have echoed Paul's calls, but the campaign has received opposition from nearby residents who claim opening the space would cause antisocial behaviour, and that an agreement exists to stop this from happening.

The closed car park at Bowring District Park

In a letter responding to Mr Kalinauckas' concerns, Telford & Wrekin Council said its officers have been reviewing parking space in the area and are yet to see it at capacity.

The authority added it will look to improve signage to a currently underused car park nearby.

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The letter said: "The reason it operates as a car park only for the users of the sporting facilities is down to an agreement with residents.

"Prior to this it was a garden/allotment of one of the Herbert Avenue properties and when the pavilion was built, the land was bought to be used solely by people booking it for football and cricket. That was the condition of sale and why the pavilion is situated where it is. Residents were assured it would not operate outside these times.

"We acknowledge that our parks have been receiving very high levels of visitors, particularly during May and June but numbers are now levelling out. Since we were made aware of the petition, officers have been checking the levels of parking and have yet to see all the available spaces within Bowring being used.

"We have also had feedback that some visitors are unaware of the car park that exists adjacent to the tennis courts due to people standing in the proximity of the café. This is something we will look to address with better signage/road marking."

The petition can be viewed at petitiononline.uk/open_bowring_park_changing_rooms_car_park

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley, Telford.

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