[...] any run-in with a council always shows up laughable procedures and jaw-dropping incompetence, so it's tantalising as to what this particular one will bring.So commented I with regard to our ongoing bit of fun with the council local to my business (more background here).
And, as predicted, this dispute doesn't look like it will disappoint ... in fact on current form, it could be a long-running seam of amusement.
On Monday a council truck turned up unannounced to paint yellow lines in the car park entrance. Not that it bothers us as we never parked there anyway, but a couple of local residents did, so the collateral damage from a vindictive anonymong complaint has begun already (more on that later).
Four of us poured ourselves a cuppa and went out to watch at close quarters as the council workers (decent guys, as it happens) - sweltering in the heat under their obligatory dayglo jackets - got to work, painting a double yellow on one side in double quick time. Very impressive. The problems started when they attempted to do the same on the other side.
After prodding a broom at a few bits of gravel, they came to the conclusion that the paint wouldn't stick as the surface wasn't flat enough. So they did the municipal equivalent of calling for back up.
"We'll have to get someone with a bigger broom", said one of the two, before they offered a cheery adieu and drove off. One would have assumed that a team detailed to paint yellow lines would be supplied with all equipment required for the job they were sent to do, but hey, I'm a private sector businessman, what do I know? No sign of the mythical nuclear broom thus far, though.
The result is a shiny new double yellow line on the side of the entrance no-one ever parked on, and nothing on the side that they did.
Since then, two residents have complained that the parking in the street, which the council have said they are happy for us to be forced to use, is now so crowded that they are experiencing a lot of problems, including one household occupied by an MS sufferer with an autistic kid. Fortunately, none have blamed us (especially as we are on the ground and trying to co-ordinate the parking that the council have offered no thought towards), but are spitting feathers at the council instead. As is a resident of the home, himself a former councillor, who is angry at being made to buy a permit to solve a non-existent problem, and has marched up to the town hall to forensically question their procedures.
Meanwhile, the 20 space car park is still, tauntingly to the local residents, empty.
To be continued, I'm sure.