Residents near Preston Docks in Ashton-on-Ribble say they are being plagued by car enthusiasts using the area as a ‘drag strip’.Advertisement
Complaints about loud music and revving engines on modified cars are circulating on social media, with residents saying the problem has worsened since the Covid-19 lockdown.
There have been reports of noise being heard from as far as Lea, Larches and Waterloo Road.
In a Facebook post, local resident Maria Allen said: “I have lived along the Docklands for 8 months and used to hear them around once a week (usually on a Sunday) but during lockdown it has been every night.
“I can hear it through headphones, music, double glazed windows, and I really don’t know what to do now.
“I am constantly on the phone to the Police on 101, I’m submitting diary sheets to Preston Council with times I hear the noise and I am waiting for a response from Lancashire County Council about what they can do to improve the road safety and deter antisocial behaviour.”
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Other local citizens have complained to the police and council. Some believe that closing the car park on Mariners Way at night could reduce the number of cars in the area.
On social media, people are calling for speed bumps along Mariners Way, and cameras along the dual carriageway.
“I know I cannot be the only person affected by this. It is so, so loud. It goes onto the early hours of the morning and I’m sure the people driving their modified, loud cars and beep their horns/screech their tyres can’t be aware of the impact this is having, as that would be a level of selfish that I just can’t understand,” Maria added.
The local community organised a residents meeting in February to try to decide what could be done about the issue, but six months later the docklands community is still being kept up late at night by the noise.
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Chris Cox, who attended the February meeting and runs the community group Love Ashton, said: “At the meeting was a PCSO, councillors from Lancashire County Council and Preston City Council, a representative from Preston City Council, and representatives from the local car enthusiasts club.
“It was an opportunity for local residents to describe the impact the almost nightly noise has on their sleep and quality of life, for the car enthusiasts to explain how difficult it is to find somewhere out of the way to get together for a chat, for PCC to explain they have tried and failed to find somewhere for the enthusiasts to meet, and for the police to say they were happy for the enthusiasts to meet up near Trax and would not move them on.”
“Since lockdown the noise nuisance is markedly worse – presumably because the car owners are not having to be in work the next day. This issue has rumbled on for years.
“I think the council needs to look at its response. They know there is an issue but their trigger point for action isn’t being reached.
“I would argue that asking residents to keep a diary of times they are affected is outdated. They need an online form – the link to which can be shared online so that residents can submit instances as they occur. The resulting database would need monitoring, which of course has a financial implication.”
Acknowledging the problem, a spokesperson for Preston City Council said: “We’re aware of residents’ concerns about a Council owned car park at Preston Docks and we are working closely with the Police to combat these issues.
“We’re exploring options to close the car park overnight from 9pm and will be monitoring the site periodically in collaboration with the police. Where a vehicle is locked into the car park then a release fee will be applicable.”
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Blog Preston has contacted Lancashire Police about the issue but have not yet received a reply.
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Are you being disturbed by the noise around the docks? Let us know in the comments