EW parking restrictions in the heart of Dartmoor could help end snow tourism chaos, a senior adviser believes.
West Devon Borough Councilor Mark Renders said new yellow lines in the road outside the Two Bridges Hotel near the entrance to Wistman’s Wood would prevent vehicles from parking twice and cause potential accidents.
Dartmoor was awash with snow tourists after the first flakes hit the national park following the easing of Covid-19 restrictions two years ago.
This led to traffic queues stretching for miles clogging moorland roads, with police having to close one to prevent others from entering the area.
Cllr Renders, also a member of the national park board, said: ‘Parking along this road can be bad in the summer, but we really suffer from snow tourists.
“You have cars along this stretch double parked and no one can pass. We had a situation where someone in a nursing home needed shots of Covid-19 and they just couldn’t get through.
“While I don’t think there have been any serious accidents along this stretch of road, there have been a few near misses.”
A ‘no waiting at any time’ order – or double yellow lines – came into effect on the roads around Two Bridges on April 29, in response to a campaign by the local Dartmoor Forest Parish Council and the Dartmoor National Park Authority.
The order prevents people from parking on a section where the B3212 and B3357 join after the Two Bridges Hotel until just after the Princetown/Plymouth junction. The two roads, which cross the moorland diagonally, meet at Two Bridges.
In summer, parked vehicles pose a hazard to other motorists negotiating this stretch, reducing visibility and narrowing the road, making it difficult for vehicles to pass. The news was welcomed by the chair of Dartmoor Forest Parish Council, Cllr Alison Geen.
She said: ‘Dartmoor Forest Parish Council is very grateful to the DNPA for acting on our request to introduce this parking restriction. We hope this will make driving past the Two Bridges Hotel on the B3357 much safer for everyone.
“We welcome the no-holds-barred proposal,” said Andrew Watson, Recreation, Access and Estates Manager for the Dartmoor National Park Authority. We believe this will go a long way to improving road safety for all road users and alleviating issues such as obstructive parking.
Mike Coombes, Sales and Marketing Director of Two Bridges Hotel, said: ‘The new yellow lines will certainly help keep all road users safe – cars, pedestrians, cyclists and of course the precious ponies and the like. animals of Dartmoor – making it an offense to park on this narrow and busy section of road.