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Former councillor fuming over Blackheath taxi ban snub
4:05pm Tuesday 31st July 2012 in News
SANDWELL Council has admitted it is not enforcing a borough wide ban on taxis using its car parks in Blackheath claiming its officers cannot “recollect” any complaints from traders or shoppers.
Blackheath Business and Community Association secretary Mary Docker is fuming because she called for the ban’s introduction specifically as a response to the problem of taxis taking up shoppers spaces in the town.
The council said this week it is enforcing the ban on private hire vehicles using council run car parks, which came into force in February, in Cradley Heath , but not Blackheath.
Former councillor Mrs Docker said: “I've been working for seven years with highways officers to get this ban introduced.
“My campaign was started because of the problems we were having in Blackheath when the bypass was built and taxi drivers began using the car park on Park Street.
“That was the whole reason the ban was introduced.
“It should be a blanket ban. I don’t understand this at all - it doesn’t make any sense.”
Councillor Ian Jones, cabinet member of neighbourhoods, said council officers did not “recollect” any complaints about private hire vehicles using Blackheath’s public car parks.
He said: "Consequently the signs necessary to enforce a parking ban on private hire vehicles have not been installed in Blackheath.
"The situation at Cradley Heath was different. There had been regular complaints from the public about the inconvenience and inconsiderate behaviour associated with use by private hire vehicle drivers.
“Consequently signing and enforcement are maintained at Cradley Heath.
"In the interests of efficiency and within the limitations of available resources we must concentrate our efforts on those locations where the greatest benefits can be achieved through enforcement. "