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Monks Lane sports hub parking concerns

People living near the rugby club at Monks Lane say plans to shift the Newbury football ground there are going to cause parking chaos.

They say the proposal is ill thought through with only around 50 car parking spaces allocated to the site – arguing that as many as 2,000 are needed.

They claim that most spaces will be taken up with home and visiting teams, leaving nowhere but nearby roads to park on.

Opposition councillors have labelled the lack of public and political debate on football provision in the town as ‘appalling’, joining residents' calls for more thorough public consultation.

Management consultant Tim Pollack lives on Heather Gardens on the other side of Monks Lane.

He says there was nowhere for residents' concerns to be reflected in the consultation and says many have written to object to the scheme.

“The parking provision plans are woefully inadequate,” he said. “If the club gets to Step 4 then up to 2,000 spectators could be here. Where are they going to park? If you look around, they are going to park in the surgery car park, or at the care home or in the roads nearby. That's the main concern of people around here, not the football ground per se.”

Listen to Tim speaking with local democracy reporter Niki Hinman

West Berkshire Council is planning to shift football provision to the rugby ground, by leasing the space from Newbury Rugby Club.

It says no details are yet public about the costs of the scheme to council tax payers as commercial discussions are still under way.

The scheme is likely to go before West Berkshire’s planning committee and then to its executive committee once final negotiations are complete.

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