Parking space row sees police called and woman left feeling 'vulnerable'

Parking enforcement has been stepped up. Photo: PA/Jonathan Brady

A woman said she was left feeling vulnerable after a man reportedly acted aggressively towards her as she tried parking in a space where a traffic cone had been placed. - Credit: PA WIRE

A row over a parking space "reserved" by a neighbour saw police called to a street in Newham.

Driving instructor Ashma Mohammed called the police to report a man acting aggressively towards her as she tried to park in a road in East Ham, at about 9.15pm on Wednesday (October 13).

After driving around looking for a place to park, she found a spot which had been blocked off with a traffic cone and dustbin.

When she removed the obstacles and started reversing, she said three people came out of a house claiming they had reserved the space.

Ashma alleged: "I was verbally abused. I felt threatened. Just because you have on-street parking, it doesn't mean you are entitled to a space.

"I didn't want to park any further away from home. I'm not going to risk my safety for the sake of someone reserving a space."

She described feeling "vulnerable" when one man grabbed her car door in a bid to force it open while a woman shouted abuse.

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Ashma said the woman threatened to damage her car and now fears retaliation.

"It was unfair to shout abuse. It just wasn't called for," she said.

A Met Police spokesperson said officers went to the road, confirming there had been a civil dispute.

He added no injuries were reported and no legal offences were committed.

Ashma called for greater awareness of drivers' rights to park on public roads and for traffic wardens to patrol at night to enforce the rules.

"It happens everywhere," she said. "People need to know the rights of people parking and driving."

Under the Highways Act 1980, only those with permission of the local highway authority can obstruct a road.

There were no recorded roadworks in the street on October 13, according to the route monitoring website One.Network.

People with a Blue Badge may qualify to have a disabled resident parking bay marked outside or near their home. 

Ashma said the space she wanted to park in was a disabled bay. Newham Council did not respond to a request for comment.

All Newham's streets are now within residential parking zones (RPZ).

Disabled resident bays can only be used by Blue Badge holders who display a valid disabled resident parking permit for their RPZ.

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