Published: 09:18, 04 October 2017
Nuisance lorry drivers will be banned from parking overnight on the A20 in Ashford when a new council crackdown starts later this month.
An 18-month clamping trial is being launched on Monday, October 30 which will stop HGV drivers from parking between Charing and the Drovers roundabout.
It follows numerous complaints from residents concerned about drivers pulling up close to homes and junctions.
Ashford Borough Council’s parking manager James Hann said: “Ashford has been chosen to trial this national initiative, and I know there will be a lot of other districts looking on enviously that we have been given the opportunity to do this.
“The A20 has been chosen because it has a long history of complaints.
"This will be the first place a trial like this has happened. It is a trial to see what impact it has on the surrounding area.”
The ban will run from 8pm to 7am the following morning Monday to Friday – and drivers will have to pay a £250 fine to get the clamp released.
An overnight waiting restriction is already in force on the Ashford Business Park and Orbital Park in Sevington, as well as at Ellingham Industrial Estate and Wotton Road.
It will run for 24 hours a day on the industrial estates on Saturday and Sunday.
Mr Hann said the new A20 scheme – which will be supported by the police in the first week – would have no affect on the other areas already covered.
"I think it is really important..." - Cllr Paul Bartlett
It follows a ban in 2015 when lorry drivers faced fines for parking at sites where engines were left running.
Former ABC leader Paul Bartlett, who represents the Weald East ward, supports the scheme.
“I think it is a great development and I think it is really important,” he said.
“It is no mean feat – this gives us an opportunity to deal with a long-standing complaint we have had from residents along the A20.
“The Henwood and Cobbs Wood estates are not covered so there is a risk of displacement, but let’s hope it is successful.”
Kent County Council's cabinet member for transport, Matthew Balfour, said there will now be a significant period of advertising in multiple languages before the ban begins later this month.
Eurotunnel, Dover Docks and all nearby truck stops have been made aware of the ban.
Cllr Balfour said: “Under this new scheme we can clamp lorries that are flouting the ban, fine them and charge them to remove the clamp.
“I am delighted that we have been able to work together to get this scheme up and running and help stamp out an issue that is affecting residents lives.
“The order will not allow any overnight parking of HGVs along the A20 between and including Charing and the Drovers Roundabout and this will extend for some distance along adjoining roads to stop HGVs simply moving further on.”