Cleveland Way car park PRGloo

Council announces changes to vehicles parked for overnight sleeping in Cleveland Way car park

Overnight parking for motorhomes, campervans and any other vehicles used for overnight sleeping is being suspended in Cleveland Way car park in Helmsley from the end of July.

Ryedale District Council used to permit a limited number of vehicles to park at the rear section of the car park. However, as of 30 July 2022 no vehicles will be allowed to park in any of the car parks for the purpose of overnight sleeping due to a number of safety issues being raised.

A full review of alternative options will take place while the suspension is underway, to see if there is any way of addressing the safety issues and to explore improved ways of managing the facility. The suspension will also allow Ryedale District Council to take on board the views of all stakeholders.

Phillip Spurr, Director of Place and Resources for Ryedale District Council explained: “During summer 2021 a number of complaints were received around too many motorhomes parking, motorhomes being parked too close together, issues with fires and BBQs on site and the emptying of waste from vehicles into the wooded area and down public drains. All these issues pose a risk to the safety of those staying on the site and our citizens, so we met with a number of partners to tackle the issues raised. We introduced a number of measures to ease the situation.”

The measures taken to resolve the issues included:

  • Automatic locking doors installed on the public toilets so they could be opened earlier and later.
  • Signs and lines to mark out safe parking distances, the maximum number of vehicles allowed and the health and safety guidelines for staying on site.
  • Additional security staff were employed on busy weekends / bank holidays from 8.00am – 8.00pm to patrol the car park, assist visitors with parking and redirect motorhomes attempting to park in the coach bays

Phillip added: “However, following a review, we are still finding that a small number of people who are using the car park for overnight stays are not complying with the rules. We even had reports of visitors camping in tents in the green space surrounding the car park. The issues raised to us are dangerous and hazardous and it is our responsibility to tackle them. They impact on the health and safety of visitors and our citizens, so that’s why we’re stopping the use of the car park for overnight sleeping to allow a full review to take place.

“We have done what we can to resolve the situation and appreciate that it is probably the behaviour of a minority of users causing these issues, however we feel that the risks presented by this behaviour are too great. While the suspension is underway, we would like to reassure motorhome and campervan drivers that they are welcome to park at the rear of the car park or in the central section of the car park during the day.

“We appreciated there are a range of views about the provision of overnight parking for the purpose of overnight sleeping in the car park and all will be taken into account. We take our responsibility to citizens, businesses, and visitors seriously and want to ensure we offer the best possible facilities and environment for all.”

The car park is split into three individual sections; the front section is designated for cars only, the central area contains coach bays and both standard and larger sized parking bays, and the rear section is made up of standard sized car parking bays where overnight motorhome parking was permitted.

To facilitate the closure Ryedale District Council will be undertaking the following actions:

  • The installation of temporary signage throughout the car park to alert users to the suspension of overnight parking from 30 July.
  • From 30 July, enforcement action will be taken for anyone using the car park to stay overnight and Enforcement Officer patrols will be extended into the evening.
  • Barriers will be installed over the coming weeks which will prevent access to the central and rear sections of the car park between 6.30pm and 6.30am.
  • A height restriction barrier will be installed at the entrance to the front section of the car park so this remains open and accessible 24/7 but will prevent access by motorhomes and campervans
  • The time delay between the closure starting and the installation of the gates and barrier will give users the opportunity to move vehicles without being locked in whilst the change in user rules is being communicated.
  • New signage will be installed in the car park to indicate what parking will be available where and when.
  • Motorhomes and campervans will continue to be able to use the car park during the day and we have implemented some wider / longer spaces to accommodate them more easily.

Several campsites, caravan sites and motorhome sites are nearby to use as an alternative stopping point. Visit: www.ryedale.gov.uk/discover-ryedale/tourist-accommodation/ for more information.

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