'How many weddings before a funeral?'

Motorists, pedestrians and school children were left struggling to pass Ryleys Lane safely on Thursday, 27th July, after guests attending a wedding at St Philip and St James Church abandoned their cars wherever they saw fit.

Vehicles were parked on both sides of Ryleys Lane right up to the junction with London Road and many were parked on the pavement, making it very difficult for pedestrians to pass.

Whilst others had abandoned their cars in the school grounds blocking the turning circle and occupying spaces allocated for disabled drivers and visitors.

Local mum Yasmin Din said "There was a wedding today at St Philip's in Alderley Edge. We are fortunate there was not also a death.

"The parking demonstrated by guests at this wedding had to be seen to be believed, but then anyone driving up Ryleys Lane this afternoon could not help but see it. Cars were parked on both sides of Ryleys Lane right up to the junction with London Road. Not only were they parked on the yellow lines but also on the pavement making it impossible for pedestrians to pass.

"I was walking back to school with a class of children from the Primary School. We were almost unable to pass. To reach the crossing on Ryleys Lane we had no choice but to put the children at considerable risk - one car after another parked illegally, dangerously and selfishly.

"On reaching Church Lane the situation only got worse. A car parked on the corner of Ryleys Lane and Church Lane reversed towards the children as they crossed wearing their hi visibility jackets. There was a wedding car parked half in the driveway to the vicarage and half on Church Lane with nobody in, making emergency vehicle access impossible. Outside the school there is a turning circle marked with yellow hashes, occupied by another parked car. The disabled space, visitors space and headmasters space were all filled by other cars, and two further cars had been abandoned in front of school."

Yasmin added "Are we now living in a society where it is more important that guests can walk no more than 100 yards to the church rather than the safety of our children is protected?

"Would it make for a memorable wedding ceremony if the service was interrupted by an ambulance driver or fireman interrupting to ask the driver of the car with wedding ribbons if they could please move their vehicle?

"Or for people to really remember this ceremony, would the guests like to drive past emergency services attending to a child knocked down on the road as a result of their selfish parking?

"Or would the guests at a wedding next week perhaps like to stand to one side while the coffin of a child killed in our village leaves the church?"

"Nobody has right to park their car wherever they wish, but all our children should be able to walk safely to and from school and around our village."

Mr Chris Perry, head teacher at Alderley Edge Community Primary School said "These images show, yet again, the thoughtless and dangerous parking of some extremely selfish drivers when leaving their vehicles in and around the village. These drivers clearly showed no regard for where they parked including in front of our school so blocking the main approach to our school for emergency vehicles should one have been required. I am extremely relieved that no emergency occurred during this time as these vehicles totally blocked the front entrance to the school.

"Equally, parking on pavements is not only inconsiderate but potentially dangerous. We had two classes of children out on walks through the village and to The Edge at this time which meant they had real difficulty negotiating blocked footpaths on their return. Thankfully, no one was hurt but the potential for an accident was extremely high as other road users, in their frustration, were rushing to pass these cars which were blocking Ryleys Lane/London Road. It was also noted that one elderly lady was trying to cross the road at the top of Ryleys Lane having just about squeezed through a space between the hedge and a car parked on the pavement. She then had to cross behind one of these parked cars so reducing her visibility and that of cars to absolutely nothing."

He added "I know Councillor Browne has done an awful lot of work around the local issues of parking but with an increasing number of events like this taking place in the village simply means the situation is only going to get worse. Perhaps, in the short term, making the car park opposite Church Lane a short term car park (e.g. 2 hours) would allow greater use of these spaces not only for visitors to our lovely shops, cafes and restaurants but also the need for short term parking for weddings and funerals at the Church of St Philip and St James."

"I urge our councillors and the village community to work together to help resolve these problems and reduce the risk to our most vulnerable groups – children, those with disability and older residents."

Alderley Edge Community Primary School, Parking, Parking , Ryleys Lane


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Jon Williams
Friday 28th July 2017 at 1:57 pm
Why have the number plates been wiped out ?
Kelvin Briggs
Friday 28th July 2017 at 2:21 pm
The Bride and Groom should be ashamed of their guests selfishness. The arrogance of their guests is astonishing. lazy sad people that think they can park anywhere and put village children in danger.
There is no mention of the police being called to the scene ? Surely that happened?
The photos are clear evidence of offences that the police can hopefully progress it they have been made aware?
Lisa Reeves
Friday 28th July 2017 at 2:29 pm
Hi Jon, we have discussed the naming and shaming drivers before.

I have received dozens and dozens of rude and insulting emails since I started running this site 8 years ago. I have also been threatened and my house and car have been egged twice.

Hence I have no desire to be naming and shaming drivers on the website, so choose to remove the number plates.
Yasmin Din
Friday 28th July 2017 at 5:16 pm
Kelvin, I did call the police from the scene on the 101 number. I did receive a call back some two hours later, but of course by then the vehicles had all gone. Not the first time I have called the number relating to a traffic matter but the response is just too slow to allow any meaningful action to be taken.

Jon, I have passed my photos complete with number plates on to our PCSO and look forward to hearing back as to whether any action will be taken.
Craig Browne
Friday 28th July 2017 at 7:30 pm
Cheshire East Council have an online portal, which both Councillors and residents can use to report incidents of illegal parking (parking on yellow lines) http://bit.ly/2m3mWAN
Obstructive parking (parking opposite a junction or blocking a footpath or driveway) remains a police issue. I am pleased to confirm that our PCSO (Chris Hopkins) will be attending my monthly surgery at Aldeli tomorrow morning from 10am.
Helen Gaughan
Friday 28th July 2017 at 8:39 pm
This is appalling . Why weren't the police there sooner ?? They should have waited outside church or even disrupted the service and booked the offenders . What arrogance these selfish , ignorant , up their own backsides attitudes have these wastes of space displayed ??? I hope the Bride and Groom and their wedding party are ashamed by this selfish , dangerous never mind illegal parking . But they probably won't be , as if they were nice , normal law-abiding residents of this village then they would already know such poor behaviour isn't acceptable , never mind illegal .... Would love to know who they are ..... I'd certainly give them a piece of my mind ... Or , maybe , they don't even live in the village so don't care anyway .... Just some " luvvies " who fancied a Church wedding
Yasmin Din
Friday 28th July 2017 at 8:52 pm
Hi Craig, thanks for the link to report illegal parking, although I imagine that as the vehicles in question are no longer there it's too late? This may be a suitable route for reporting persistent offenders but perhaps not for an incident of this type where road safety is compromised. If the police did not respond for two hours, I can't imagine traffic enforcement's officers advised via the internet attending any faster, although if I am wrong please advise. Surely rather than reporting incidents after they have happened we as a community need to develop a plan to ensure such displays of dangerous and illegal parking do not occur in the first place. Had a pedestrian been injured or worse as a result of yesterday's selfish action by motorists, the issuing of a parking ticket after the event would have been of no solace. We are approaching this problem from the wrong direction. We need to prevent the offence from occurring in the first place. I am deeply saddened by people's apathy and acceptance of such danger, but in part I think this is because no real sustained action is ever taken.
Yasmin Din
Friday 28th July 2017 at 9:02 pm
Hi Helen, I know the names of the bride and groom as they are published in the newsletter for St Phillip's and St James'! I don't imagine this was the kind of publicity they were looking for.

Glad to see that at the wedding today there was not one illegally parked car, proving that it is not necessary to break the law.

Perhaps going forward the traffic enforcement officers could attend outside the church and in the general vicinity on days when weddings are taking place.
Robin Pye
Saturday 29th July 2017 at 9:43 am
Hello. My name is Robin Pye and I am the new vicar at St Philip and St James church. I was very sorry to hear about the stress and inconvenience caused by people attending the marriage service held at our church on Thursday.

While, of course, at one level, as a church we cannot control where people who come to our services park their cars, and neither really can the bride and groom in a case like this, nevertheless, as a church, we are going to review how we can work with wedding couples to reduce the negative impact that bringing a large number of people to our church will have on the village. I am confident that there are things we can do to make sure we don't have this level of disruption caused by a marriage service again.

We were able to talk to the wedding couple for the marriage service on Friday, in the light of what happened on Thursday and, as Yasmin has generously acknowledged, there were no poorly parked cars on Friday.
Sue Trotter
Saturday 29th July 2017 at 1:22 pm
As a regular visitor to the village why not form a LEP (Local Ecumenical Partnership) between the Anglicans and the Methodists and possibly the Catholics in order to share resources as well as worship - this way you could use each others car parks for big occasions. I live in Hull and we share together with our Anglican friends on as many occasions as possible in the hope that in years to come we can be together forever!
Stuart Gallaway
Monday 31st July 2017 at 7:40 pm
Fully agree that it is stupid, inappropriate and totally inconsiderate parking but, unfortunately, this seems to be the new "norm" for Alderley Edge. By ringing 101, I would have thought that it is now recorded somewhere and also if you use the website that Craig has listed it should also be recorded. Having used this website myself to report illegal parking, I found it dead easy to use, you can upload photos and add as much detail as you see fit. However, I'm now having to wait to see if there's any acknowledgement and/or action............
I say 'Bring Back the Traffic Warden'!!
Dave Clarke
Tuesday 1st August 2017 at 4:55 pm
I agree with Stuart to a large degree, the only effective solution is a 'ticket', we do have traffic wardens I see them often in the central zone of the village but I don't think I ever see them beyond the immediate centre. I can understand that walking every street isn't possibly the most effective use of the limited resource but I am sure we could all give village intelligence "be at this road during this time slot' and they would get their ticket count up!
Harry Martin
Tuesday 1st August 2017 at 5:25 pm
As a church that is inviting guests I think you have every right to ask them move their cars. If people were attending someones house in our road and we thought it was dangerous then would be knocking on doors. Looking at the photos it was very obvious that these visitors were causing an obstruction . Maybe it would fund a few more police if cars were ticketed.
Elizabeth Horrocks
Wednesday 2nd August 2017 at 10:47 am
The idea of churches sharing parking won't work, unfortunately: firstly, the other churches have extremely limited parking space, and secondly, if people won't walk a couple of hundred yards from where there are no yellow lines, they would be unlikely to walk from the far side of the village, where the other 2 churches are!
Helen Williams
Thursday 3rd August 2017 at 8:11 am
I agree with Stuart ,why hasn't Alderley Edge got a traffic warden. It wouldn't be an added expense because the parking fines would pay for it. Drivers in Alderley Edge are used to doing what they please, driving up one way streets , speeding & parking illegally. The village needs a deterrent we should have our own Traffic warden before there is another statistic
Jon Williams
Thursday 3rd August 2017 at 9:03 am
We do have parking enforcement officers covering the village, spoke to one only a couple of days ago
Verity Williams
Monday 21st August 2017 at 7:43 pm
The more people get away with something the more they do it. If people aren't facing accountability from the police or traffic wardens, leave your own handwritten note under a windscreen wiper. At least you'll know that they're given the message that it's not acceptable. And gives you a chance to explain the danger. Hopefully they'll think twice next time.