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Shop owner calls for Police Scotland to adequately address issue of illegal parking in the centre of Forres

By Garry McCartney

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Illegally parked in the centre of Forres.
Illegally parked in the centre of Forres.

THE OWNER of a business in the centre of Forres is calling on local police to take illegal parking more seriously.

The businessman, who wishes to remain anonymous, has reported the issue occurring outside his shop on numerous occasions but has yet to see anything being done about it.

He said: “We need a uniformed presence - at least once in a while – to engage with illegal parkers and the general public.

“Our police are stretched but if they don’t meet the public, how will they know what’s happening?”

Cars illegally parked on Tolbooth Street on Monday morning. Pictures: Beth Taylor.
Cars illegally parked on Tolbooth Street on Monday morning. Pictures: Beth Taylor.

The shopkeeper kept note of the space outside his High Street premises being occupied despite it being illegal to park there, over a three month period.

He said: “Phoning 101 whilst trying to run a business isn’t practical so most times I hung up.

“I was advised not to engage with those parked illegally, nor to take photos but I continued for a while as it’s evidence.”

As well as contacting the police, he sent the details to Moray’s MP, a Moray Councillor and Forres Community Council (FCC).

Douglas Ross MP confirmed problems with illegal parking have been raised by constituents and businesses.

He said: “Local officers committed to deploying enforcement officers wherever possible but more must be done.

“However, if we are to avoid repeat offenders then our officers must have guarantees that they will have what they need to do so.”

Double yellow lines but no action taken.
Double yellow lines but no action taken.

The complainer said: “I’ve seen no action on the part of Police Scotland and haven’t been visited by the promised sergeant.

“I wrote to FCC chairman Steve Ferris and he called in, raised the matter and has plans to educate via posters in shop windows.”

On-street parking enforcement in Moray has been the responsibility of Police Scotland since cutbacks resulted in the loss of the area’s traffic wardens in 2013. The police will issue a fine if they find nn illegally parked vehicle.

A spokesperson reported to Forres police.

He said: “When we become aware of illegal parking issues, proportionate action will be taken if ongoing.

“We urge all drivers to park responsibly and to be considerate.

“Anyone with concerns about illegal parking should report it via 101.”

FCC chairman Steve Ferris and Cllr Paul McBain (Forres, Conservative) raised the issue at the last meeting of the watchdog group.

Mr Ferris said: “Without a traffic warden, there is little we can do, other than conduct a poster campaign.

“It requires a cultural change.”

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