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Angling for a battle

A GROUP of Aldershot residents has overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to build a vehicle entrance for anglers on their land.

A GROUP of Aldershot residents has overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to build a vehicle entrance for anglers on their land.

Members from the Farnborough and District Angling Society fish in lakes behind Field Way, and regularly park outside houses for days at a time.

This has angered local residents who have been meeting with councillors over the proposals to build an entrance to the lakes through their land.

Local councillor Keith Dibble said: "In the meeting which took place around Christmas time, the angling society came up with the proposal to build an entrance to the lakes from Field Way so that anglers no longer needed to park in the residential road.

"Over the past few years things have got a bit heated with them parking outside people's houses.

"The thing is that they're parked there for hours not just 20 minutes.

"Occasionally it happens that anglers will park over a whole weekend during the fishing season in the summer which does create ill feelings."

In previous attempts to solve the problem, Rushmoor council erected ‘Keep Clear' signs along the roads, which temporarily solved the problem for residents; and were considering painting yellow lines to eradicate parking on the road altogether.

Yet this would stop residents from parking outside their own houses and simply move the problem on elsewhere, which left the angling society to come up with their own proposal.

At present, the only form of access is a footpath leading from Field Way, and the angling society would have had to buy land from one of the houses next to the footpath to widen the route for cars.

Yet Cllr Dibble said this could create more problems, making the cul-de-sac a through route for traffic to and from the lakes, although he admitted there was "scope to build an access route from Field Way to the lakes".

"We sent each household who could be potentially affected a full copy of the proposal from the angling society and asked for their comments," said Cllr Sue Dibble.

"We had a very high response from local residents and more than 90% rejected the plan."

However the North Town ward councillors hope that despite the rejection of the plan, discussions will continue between them, Rushmoor Borough Council and the angling society.

"I think it was an idea worthy of consultation," said Cllr Keith Dibble. "We are working hard to resolve the problem for the residents — it has been going on for about seven years now.

"For a handful of people it is a real problem. We are looking for a solution from the Surrey side. Our Highways department have written to Guildford Borough Council to reach an agreement."

A letter from the angling society's secretary, Gerry Lucas to Rushmoor Borough Council states: "Farnborough and District Angling society have been established as an angling society since 1933 and in that time have done our best to get on with everyone.

"I have on many occasions asked anglers to park in Eastern Road or if they have to park in the Close or Field Way to be courteous and considerate when doing so.

"I can only apologise most sincerely to the residents for any disruption or abusive attitude of any of our members who have offended them.

"Since we purchased the lakes in the early Nineties, we have been beset with the problems of parking and we desperately need help in getting appropriate access to our lakes."


Charlotte Neal
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