Published: 16 March 2020


The proposed installation by TMBC of double yellow lines has taken up a lot of our time lately, quite rightly so.

The Parish Council in this instance is not the decision maker but a consultee. It is Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council who has made the decision. The role of the Parish Council has been to try and obtain the very best for the village and if double yellow lines are going to negatively impact upon residents then we expect there to be a solution put in place to mitigate that disruption.

We are concerned that some residents of Medway Meadows will be adversely affected by the double yellow lines and on 03 March we advised TMBC that we wanted to revise our comments. We are firmly of the opinion that in order to deal with obstructive parking, double yellow lines are needed at Hale Street, Old Road and Medway Meadows. However, whilst we have no objection to the proposal in respect of Hale Street and Old Road as far as Medway Meadows is concerned we felt that residents will be unfairly and adversely impacted by their installation as planned and instead offered the compromised solution whereby the double yellow lines extended no further into Medway Meadows than the rear of Aces Car Sales.

We also informed TMBC that if there were genuine legal reasons why the lines had to extend a certain length into Medway Meadows, then the installation of the double yellow lines should go ahead as planned.

We asked TMBC to consider setting up a parking permit scheme for residents of Medway Meadows in order to mitigate any inconvenience that they might experience and we asked TMBC to evaluate our revised proposal in advance of their meeting of the Joint Transportation Board which was held on 09 March 2020

On 05 March 2020 we were advised by TMBC’s Parking Section that if the proposal was turned down it would be some 2 – 5 years before the obstructive parking problem at Medway Meadows, Hale Street and Old Road would be considered again during which time there would be no way that the present situation could be ameliorated.

On receipt of this communication, overnight on Thursday, 05 March, members were canvassed for their opinions and on Friday, 06 March, we advised TMBC that there was a clear consensus that it is better to do something than nothing. Especially in view of the fact that the majority of residents who responded at both the informal and formal consultation stages had no objection.

80% voted in favour at the informal stage 67% at the formal stage

A clear majority of those who responded to both consultations were in favour of the double yellow lines

As a council we are very aware that many residents in Medway Meadows will be negatively impacted by the installation of the double yellow lines and we asked for assurances from TMBC that if the new parking restrictions did not resolve the obstructive parking problem that TMBC would revisit the situation. Notwithstanding this, we also asked for a review to be carried out within 12 months of the double yellow lines being installed so that their effectiveness could be evaluated. We also asked for the following actions:

  1. In order to mitigate any inconvenience caused to residents at Medway Meadows, all options, including a residents parking permit scheme be fully explored and evaluated with feedback provided to both the Parish Council and residents.
  2. That the double yellow lines are supported by an adequate enforcement regime and that robust action is taken not only against the owners of any vehicles disregarding the parking restrictions but against persistent offenders.
  3. That residents be notified in writing
  4. That the Parish Councils comments be raised at the meeting of TMBC’s Joint Transportation Board on 09 March and duly minuted.

On Monday 16 March 2020, TMBC advised us as follows

“Double yellow lines at junctions are what is known as “junction protection” – this maintains visibility both of and for drivers and pedestrians at the junction, and also keeps the junction clear so vehicles turning can complete the movement without being held-up by queuing vehicles waiting to emerge.

The length of double yellow lines for junction protection is dependent on the layout of the road and the prevalent traffic speeds. The minimum distance from a junction would be 10m (approx. 2 car lengths) but given the junction layout and the speed limits it is appropriate for junction protection to be 15m (approx. 3 car lengths) from the Give Way line.

The situation in Medway Meadows is not straightforward as there is a second junction just within the entrance to the road that leads to the southern cul-de-sac and the junction protection from one junction “overlaps” with the other. We also have to take into consideration the location of the driveway which is opposite the southern cul-de-sac entrance.

Technically double yellow line restrictions could be introduced to the rear boundary line of Aces Car Sales; however, this was not the proposal that was advertised due to the road layout (as detailed above).

The restrictions were considered by the Joint Transportation Board, along with the consultation responses and the Board decided that the advertised proposals should be introduced”.

We are sorry that some residents will be negatively impacted by the decision of TMBC, regrettably there will be times when we are unable despite our best efforts to please everyone. This unfortunately is a case in point when action is being demanded and where the majority of those who responded to TMBC’s consultations had no objection.

I hope this statement goes someway to reassuring you that the Parish Council will continue doing its best to obtain the best outcomes for our village.