RESIDENTS have branded the parking situation in their village as ‘madness’.

People living in Gisburn Road, Barrowford, have been using the car park at Malt Kiln, free of charge, in order to avoid clogging up the already busy and congested road.

However, when charges were introduced at the weekend, visitors and people living in the area took to parking on the road, causing a hazard for others trying to pass.

Simon Horrocks, who has lived in Barrowford for 17 years, said the car park at Malt Kiln, which is leased by Pendle Heritage Trust, has always been free to use for residents.

He said: “Parking in this part of the village is a nightmare as the houses were built in 1680 when no-one had cars.

“There’s a single white line in the road so cars can’t park outside homes without risking a fine and three points (for forcing cars to cross white line to pass you).

“Some locals actually have laminated signs ready to put on your windscreen if you park on the road outside their houses, so in short we all park on the car park.”

However, Mr Horrocks said that two days ago a sign had been erected in the car park informing people it would now be operated by a company called Easy Park, and they would have to pay 50p an hour (up to £10 a day) to park there.

He said: “I have since heard that residents can get a £120 a year pass but none of us were told that. So now there is an empty car park and the road is carnage.

“I cannot believe Pendle Heritage Trust are allowed to do something so obviously not in the public interest.

“Now letters are being put on windscreens warning of prosecution so there is no where at all to park our cars, it’s madness.”

Pendle Heritage Trust leases the land from Pendle Council, and in 2017, the trust got an alteration on the lease to allow them to charge for parking on the Malt Kiln site.

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John Miller, from Heritage Trust for the North West said: “The Malt Kiln Car Park is owned by the trustees of Heritage Trust for the North West. The trustees cannot continue to provide a free car park when it receives no grants or subsidy, and they are obliged by the Charity Commissioners to generate income from their assets.

“Representatives of the trust have attended meetings over the past two years of the Higherford residents association to explain the escalating problems of fly-tipping and anti-social behaviour on the site and the need for better maintenance.

“The trustees' proposals include a residents permit scheme of £120 per annum which will be discounted for tenants. It is not much to ask for being able in due course to provide better facilities.

“Pay and display meters were erected last December, and residents have had six months to ask trustees what is happening.

“The parking company is in the process of introducing the charges. It is unfortunate a technical fault made the system go ‘live’ this weekend before the trustees had an opportunity to notify residents.

“The company confirms there will be no fixed penalties until this scheme comes into force. Everyone is working towards a deadline of July 1.”