Pembrokeshire council’s traffic team have been urged to learn lessons from the busy summer season around tourist and coastal areas, despite promises from the authority to crackdown on inconsiderate parking and wild-camping across the county.

Examples of visiting motorists ditching their cars on housing estates along areas such as Heywood Lane and Marsh Road, as well as busy main routes into the town have been frequent; whilst camper vans and motor homes parking up for the night on residential streets almost on a daily basis over the summer have also been reported to the authorities.

County councillor for Tenby’s north ward Michael Williams has stated that he will ask that PCC’s traffic team ‘learn from this season’.

“In my view there should be a considerable extension of parking regulations in particular on the outer part of the town, where irresponsible individuals are more and more abandoning their cars,” he remarked.

“The situation has made life very difficult for full time residents and businesses who often find their accesses blocked by irresponsible drivers who sometimes abandon their vehicles for the duration of their stay.

“A main concern is the growing number who arrive in semi-converted vans and stay overnight, often with no sanitary provision, this makes the situation far worse.

“Everyone understands that Tenby can’t survive without tourism, but there needs to be an audit of the cost of tourism to those few families who still cling on to reside in the town all year round,” he continued.

The county council have been prompted into issuing advice for motorists to - please plan ahead, try to avoid hotspots, and park responsibly several times leading into and over the holiday season.

The authority’s parking enforcement officers have also taken to try and clamp down on motorhomes and camper vans parking illegally, with examples of some coastal car parks having their capacity reduced due to camper vans taking all the space.

PCC introduced new restrictions prohibiting motor caravans from parking overnight at Manorbier Beach Road, with the restrictions meaning that motor caravans, including motorhomes, are not permitted to make an overnight stay between the hours of 8 pm and 7 am.

Similar restrictions were also be brought in at the beach road at Freshwater West, meaning that motor caravans, including motorhomes, are now not be permitted to park on the beach road between the hours of 11 pm and 7 am.

PCC’s Cabinet Member for Infrastructure, Licensing and Major Events, Clr. Phil Baker recently said: “If you have a motor caravan or a motorhome, please plan ahead and stay at one of Pembrokeshire’s many fantastic licensed campsites.

“Overnight camping in beauty spots has a negative impact on our environment – please help us to take care of it by staying at a registered campsite, these are all set up and looking forwarded to meeting you.”

Clr. Williams has also urged Pembrokeshire county council to act to prevent inconsiderate parking continuing on a route up to Tenby cemetery.

The issue has been raised for some time now, that when many of the town’s car parks are full, motorists are resorting to ditching their vehicles along Slippery Back, leading to concerns that an inordinate amount of cars parked along the stretch of roadway leading up to the cemetery, would make the route impassable for a funeral cortège.

Last Thursday (August 12) one local resident highlighted an incident where a large service lorry had difficulty accessing the utility buildings at the top of Slippery Back.

“This showed the example of the chaos caused when people park along this bridleway,” said the resident.

Clr. Williams recently asked PCC if yellow lines could be painted on the access road to Tenby cemetery, or for the authority to investigate temporary measures to prevent obstructive parking, and to ensure access is available at all times in particular for funeral cortèges from Narberth Road to the cemetery.

A response from PCC’s Senior Traffic and Road Safety Engineer Clare Williams, stated that she had consulted with colleagues within the Authority regarding the status of Slippery Back.

“Officers have confirmed that ‘Slippery Back’ is a Public Bridleway and as such the Section 34 Road Traffic Act says it is a criminal offence to drive on a bridleway without lawful authority,” she said.

“There would be no option to change the status to BOAT (Byways Open To All Traffic) because the The Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act (NERC) extinguished motor vehicle rights unless already recorded or applied for.

“It may be possible for Highways to adopt it as a county highway and put in on the list of streets, in which case it would come of the definitive map due to the legal event”

“Given the current status the Traffic Team would not be in a position to consider double yellow lines in this location. However if in the future the status of Slippery Back changes it could be considered as part of our bi annual reviews.

“Maintaining access for those attending the cemetery is important, as is all users of the bridleway. The route up to the cemetery and beyond is quiet, rural in nature and requires the implementation of measures which are in keeping with the immediate surrounding.”

As such, PCC’s public rights of way team have been asked for feedback, and to explore the possibility of a short term solution which discourages parking on the verges but ensures that all bridleway users are considered under any measures that are implemented.

The issues are not just blighting Tenby town, as similar examples have been given nearby by Penally county councillor Jon Preston.

“Penally has an ongoing problem with bad parking which on occasions prevents the 349 bus service from travelling through on the village road, leaving passengers stranded at the village bus stops,” he explained.

“The introduction of car parking charging by the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority at Penally Railway station car park has had the predicted effect of drivers using the grass verges along the by-pass to park.

“I have also noticed the increase in overnight sleeping in vehicles in and around Penally and Tenby.

“It is difficult to defend the county council when the public perception is that there never seems to be a traffic warden around when you need one. Whilst I do understand that the police and parking enforcement officers have very different roles there appears to be a total lack of traffic management in operation during peak season.

“This needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency but it is difficult as policing is not yet devolved to Welsh Government resulting in a lack of adequate resources to deal with the problems associated with policing traffic in a small but busy high profile tourist destination,” he added.