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Motor home owners could be locked out of car parks in seaside town

Dedicated bays may be provided at one park at resort popular with locals

Newcastle, Co Down

Barriers could be erected at car parks in Newcastle in a bid to keep out motor home owners.

The situation has been described as “significantly problematic” and Newry, Mourne and Down District Council is to consider installing height restriction barriers.

A recommendation to that effect will go to the council’s regulatory and technical services committee next week.

Council provisionally agreed last September to conduct research on the issue pertaining to motor homes using car parks in the coastal resort.

Two sites were identified as requiring action – Downs Road and Glen River – or Patten’s Bridge car parks.

The barriers would incorporate a silhouette of the Mourne Mountains in keeping with the ‘aesthetic appreciation’ of the area.

At the same time, consideration is also being given as part of the exercise for a reconfiguration of spaces at Donard car park.

This would be done to create six dedicated bays for motor homes. This would also require the installation of additional signage, as the 12 hour occupancy restriction in any 24 hour period would remain in place, as per current tourist amenity bye-laws.

The council further down the line would also look to review what have been described as “outdated and ambiguous” bye-laws in relation to the parking element in future.

As it stands, it can erect signage advising the bays are for motor homes, but it would not be able to insist cars do not park in them and would be “very much dependent upon good nature” of motorists.

The officer’s recommendations will be considered at committee and go back to full council for a final decision.

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