Cyclists unable to use dedicated Pembury lane because of parking
BIKING enthusiasts say a Pembury cycle lane has become pointless because it is constantly blocked by parked cars.
Councils are virtually powerless to move vehicles parked in the bike lanes in the High Street, which force riders to swerve into traffic.
The path begins at the top of the High Street and ends near the junction with Cornford Close.
Drivers are allowed to park in the 300-metre path because it is an advisory cycle lane.
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West Kent Cycling Touring Club committee chairman Peter Scott said it should be either a dedicated cycle path or a road.
He said: "If kids are riding in the cycle lane and have to come out and don't see a car, it could be very dangerous.
"I wouldn't have lives put at risk; it should be one or the other.
"I know parking is a problem wherever you go but this isn't the solution."
The Highway Code states drivers should only park in advisory lanes in "unavoidable" circumstances.
When the Courier visited the site at 11am on Tuesday, 12 cars were parked in the cycle path.
Dedicated parking in Pembury High Street is painfully lacking with only a few bays opposite the village green and the Camden Arms car park only for use by pub customers.
Organisers of the weekly Pembury market, which takes place in the Village Hall in the High Street, have also stated they need more parking facilities.
Head of economic development for Tunbridge Wells Borough Council David Candlin said the council was powerless to move the cars "because there is no legislation allowing us to do so".
Kent Police said motorists should be "considerate of others when parking".
A spokesman said: "If officers witness cars parked in cycle lanes or causing an obstruction to other road users, we have the power to remove the car or fine the owner of the vehicle."
Kent County Council, which is in charge of cycle lanes, refused to comment.