Parking chaos: netball cars disrupting Berkeley street

Leonie Simpson is sick of people parking illegally in her street during netball season. Picture: GREG TOTMAN
Leonie Simpson is sick of people parking illegally in her street during netball season. Picture: GREG TOTMAN

A Berkeley widow who has been verbally abused by irate netball mums looking to park in her street has called on the council to end the traffic chaos.

Hooka Creek Road resident Leonie Simpson is fed up with people blocking her driveway and flouting no-parking signs to get to their netball games in time.

Every Saturday during winter, the usually quiet suburban road transforms into a congested car park where, according to Ms Simpson, anything goes.

"The council put no-parking signs down on one side of the road but people don't take notice of them, they still park there," Ms Simpson said.

"If you ask them not to park, they tell you where to go. I've had women tell me to eff-off, that they can park anywhere they like."

Drivers have blocked off Ms Simpson's driveway at least five times, while her neighbour reported the same problem to police as recently as last week.

Before the recent death of her gravely ill husband, Arthur, Ms Simpson used to worry that the congestion would stop an ambulance from reaching them.

The 63-year-old retiree, who has lived in the street for 20 years, describes the situation as "utterly stupid".

"They just don't care, they're above the rules. They've got no consideration for people who live in the street," she said.

Residents in neighbouring Hertford Street also feel the pinch when drivers park on both sides of the road, effectively turning it into a one-way street.

It was particularly bad during weekends when the site hosted netball carnivals, Ms Simpson said.

Now she is calling on Wollongong City Council to create more parking or send rangers to the street regularly on Saturdays until drivers improved their behaviour.

"It's just annoying because you can't park outside your house or have any visitors over because there's no parking, and it's inconvenient because [the Illawarra District Netball Association] don't tell us when it's on," she said.

Ms Simpson suggested the association did a letterbox drop of carnival dates at the start of the season, so that residents could plan around the events.

Association president Dianne Elvy did not respond to the Mercury's calls on Sunday.

Ms Simpson said soccer did not affect residents in the same way.

"We don't have problems with the soccer - not one iota. Their traffic doesn't worry us. They have their own parking area and people park in there."


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