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Lido car park opposition intensifies
OPPOSITION to plans for a second car park at Ruislip Lido have grown amid claims that Hillingdon Council was providing misleading information to support its case.
In a transport statement submitted as part of its revised planning application, the capacity of the existing car park is incorrectly stated as 200 spaces. The Friends of Ruislip Lido (FoRL) pointed out the correct figure was 260.
Council leader Ray Puddifoot had attempted to win over stakeholders such as FoRL and Ruislip Lido Residents' Group by meeting directly with them but opposition to the car park is as fierce as it was when the plan was first mooted two years ago.
A formal objection from FoRL, backed by its petition of nearly 1,000 names, was submitted in April. As well as attacking the errors in the planning application, the group argue that the new parking facility is wholly unnecessary and would ruin a part of the lido enjoyed by families and dog walkers.
FoRL chairman Vicky Brownlee wrote: "The application states that a temporary car park is proposed to become permanent. This site is not a temporary car park and never has been. In another report it suggests the reinstatement of the car park. This area has never been a car park."
Damage to the environment is another key concern. The council included in its plans a proposal for a 'reptile exclusion zone' to ensure resident slow worms are not adversely affected by the new car park. Adders and grass snakes are also thought to reside nearby.
FoRL state that other wildlife would be affected as well. "There are adders, frogs, toads, newts and nesting birds all in and around this area. This is last piece of folio cover between the woods and the Lido.
"Deer are seen daily early in the morning in this area, but that is not when they [the council] did their survey. This area needs protecting."
And regarding the loss of a part of Willow Lawn, an area due to be used for the upcoming Ruislip Woods Festival on Sunday, May 13, FoRL objected: "This area is currently used by families and dog walkers.
"Children play ball games and families have relaxed quiet picnics. Access to this car park will alter this area forever. The proposed road will be adjacent to this area, and to introduce motorbikes is even worse."
Ms Brownlee advocates improved use of the Lido overflow car park currently situated at Breakspear Crematorium, which she said was "poorly signposted".
A park and ride scheme is also mooted as an alternative. She added: "The existing car park is badly laid out and the lines are worn, has anyone looked into redesigning this to increased parking?"
A council spokeswoman said: "We would ask the Friends of Ruislip Lido to make their representations to the relevant planning committee when this application is considered."
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