Havering Council offers OAP parking - 3 miles from home
An 84-year-old woman who has been told to leave her council garage to make way for new houses in Harold Wood was offered a parking space three miles away.
Havering Council has approved plans to knock down garages to make way for new housing in Hamilton Drive.
Margaret Wilkins, who is a blue badge holder and has mobility problems, lives in council flats in the road, where she had a nearby garage for 40 years. She was told to vacate it last week.
The council did offer her an alternative garage, but this was in Amersham Road, Harold Hill – three miles away, which they said was now the closest to her.
She said it was a nightmare trying to find a parking bay near where she lives because there are 40 flats and only nine parking bays.
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She said: “I am lucky I can still walk and drive, it gives me a bit of independence. But I can’t walk too far.
“I was offered a garage in Amersham Road, Harold Hill. That is a 10-minute journey on the bus. What is the point of having a car if I have to do that?”
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She added that she was having to wait until the evening when people had gone home from work to try and find a parking space close to where she lives.
The council said that because Miss Wilkins has a blue badge she will be able to park in the residents’ parking bays in her street and will be exempt from parking restrictions.
Cllr Lesley Kelly, cabinet member for housing, added: “New homes are in very high demand and we want to redevelop around 60 mainly derelict garage sites in the borough into affordable housing for local families.
“We are offering existing tenants alternative garage space to rent but there is only a limited number.”