POLICE are working with the local council at Instow in an effort to stop the obstruction of gates that allow access for emergency vehicles on to the beach. Following the parking of vehicles in front of the gates and the nearby bus stop, thought to be by d

POLICE are working with the local council at Instow in an effort to stop the obstruction of gates that allow access for emergency vehicles on to the beach.

Following the parking of vehicles in front of the gates and the nearby bus stop, thought to be by dog walkers or people using local pubs and restaurants, police have warned that they will now be issuing fixed penalty tickets to those involved.

Concern at this illegal and potentially dangerous parking had already caused police to display notices asking drivers to leave free access to the gates, which are also used by fishermen to transport equipment and by the coast and countryside service.

PC Terry Hodgson, Neighbourhood Beat Manager for Instow, said: "We have worked with the parish council to try and resolve this issue and have now agreed that enforcement action is required. Any driver witnessed leaving their vehicles at the entrance to the gates or adjacent bus stop will be issued with a fixed penalty notice."

Instow Parish Clerk Roger Jacob said: "Instow Parish Council is concerned that the emergency access gates opposite the Boathouse on Marine Parade is regularly blocked by inconsiderate motorists, who park their cars in the immediate vicinity and also on the bus stop nearby. Besides the obvious life and death situations this may foil, it is also the source of unnecessary traffic congestion because vehicles, including large buses, are unable to pass at this location.

"The local police have spent a considerable amount of time seeking the co-operation of motorists not to breach traffic regulations but, it would seem, to no avail. Therefore, with some regret, we now fully support the police in taking positive action in this regard by issuing fixed penalty tickets."

Local officers are now regularly visiting the area to check for vehicles causing obstructions and anyone wishing to discuss this matter can contact PC Hodgson at Barnstaple Police Station on 08452 777 444.