Pair parked in residential area got a taxi to Gatwick
28th September 2016 – Crawley News
A Crawley cab firm has promised to investigate after a disabled Pound Hill woman was left “outraged” when she witnessed a taxi driver pick up a couple who had parked their car near her home before going on holiday.
On September 15 Laura Hunt was trying to get into her garage on Haywards when she saw a couple park their car opposite her home and a Metro Cars driver pull up beside them, mutter something before turning round and then loading the holidaymakers’ luggage into his car and driving off. Mrs Hunt, who suffers from fibromyalgia, believes the driver shouldn’t have picked the couple up once it became clear what they were doing.
She said: “I couldn’t believe people were actually so rude as to use our road as a free car park.” Mrs Hunt added that the following Thursday she was lying ill in bed when her husband came up and told her that he had seen a taxi pull up behind the white car that had been parked there.
She said: “He watched the same couple get out of the same people-carrier-style car and get their luggage and get into their own car. “I have been unable to get in and out of my drive safely quite a few times over the last few weeks from the amount of cars that seem to keep parking up and down the street.
“I do feel outraged that a local company would [treat] their own local customers [this way]. We have enough issues with parking around Crawley as it is without the Gatwick car parks spilling out on to our roads.”
Responding to the concerns, a Metro Cars spokesman told the Crawley News that sometimes holidaymakers make arrangements with local residents to park outside their homes.
He said: ‘At times we do get lots of jobs from people parking up their cars. Sometimes there is an arrangement in place to park their car.”
When asked if the taxi firm would be investigating this particular incident and reiterating to drivers not to encourage holidaymakers to park in residential streets, he added: “Of course. We will look into any incident and investigate.”
Speaking to the Crawley News last month about a similar issue in Pound Hill, Councillor Kevan McCarthy said parking is an issue across the town, but feels that his ward in particular suffers from holidaymakers leaving their cars there before heading to Gatwick.
He said: “It is perhaps the single biggest issue and concerns a lot of people in the town. Airport parking would seem to be a contributing factor to this problem. In Pound Hill we notice it when a car parks up on our road and stays there for weeks, and then a taxi pulls up and the car drives off.
“People understandably want to park For free because it is quite expensive to park at Gatwick Airport, so parking in a nearby neighbourhood and getting a taxi is sometimes much cheaper.
“But people who are not from the area aren’t as considerate when they do park, they are often against the clock so don’t always park well. It means bin lorries can’t get up certain roads, and people lose their parking space.”