Enough of polluting cars turning our district into dirty Dalston, say locals

dirtydalston4©DA19: Ridley Road Market, Dalston, Hackney E8, shuts down for the night © davidaltheer@gmail.com 030619
warn©DA19: © davidaltheer@gmail.com 090619
Top: Ghostlyof car outlines loom ominously as Ridley Road closes for the night. They seem to hint at one of the threats to Dalston’s great market and the area around it. Above: Cecilia Road has become so busy that a monitor has had to be installed to slow vehicles to lower pollution and accident levels

• The noise and pollution from traffic into Dalston have driven people living near Ridley Road to start a campaign to green the streets. The leaflet at right has been popped through doors, and councillors are being lobbied. FIONA COLBECK offers some suggestions to make our lives less stressed and much healthier 



LONDON E8 IS A GREAT PLACE for shopping, but since Sainsbury’s ended free Kingsland Centre parking, more visitors use the residential streets.

In zone C Hackney council provides paying parking spaces in Ridley Road, St Mark’s Rise, Colvestone Crescent, Cecilia and Sandringham roads and other nearby streets. But spaces are limited. Motorists who want to shop at Ridley Road Market, the high street and at the Kingsland Centre park in residential streets. And the newish Overground link tempts commuters to use Dalston as a park-and-ride venue.

I live in Ridley Road and every day I see double-parking; parking on double yellows; misuse of disabled bays; parking in resident-only spaces; blocked roads and the consequent road rage; Ridley Road used as a rat run; and people sitting in illegally parked cars, engines idling as they await a companion’s return from shopping.

Sunday drivers: on the market’s day off, Ridley Road becomes a giant car park (pic: F Colbeck)

All this culminates in stress, pollution, excessive noise, and danger for shoppers and residents alike. In these days of Parliament-declared climate emergency those of us who drive need to reduce our car use by walking, cycling and using public transport more.

What’s the solution? Hackney council should:

not provide paid parking, which simply encourages motorists to Dalston, but instead make all of E8 parking resident-only, apart from for disabled badge-holders;

make the parking zones smaller so we Hackneyites are not tempted to make short journeys by car;

plant trees in existing parking spots;

add more cycle racks;

make rat runs accessible only to buses, bicycles and resident motorists.

Parking©DA18: E end Sandringham Rd Dalston E8 160118 © David Altheer
Cars come first in Dalston: these motorists drove on to the pavement in Sandringham Road

For our part, we should:

buy a trolley and walk to the shops. Our body wins and so do the lungs of everybody in the area.

Hackney council has just been given £500,000 by the Greater London Authority to do in Stoke Newington the sort of thing I suggest. Dalston needs the same.

Kingslandcarpk©DA19: Kingsland Centre car pk Dalston E8 © david.altheer@gmail.com 130119
Where are the cars? The Kingsland Centre car park after supermarket shoppers lost their free parking

For the health of the community — and of the planet — we must reduce our use of the combustion engine.

Published 110619

If you want to help, join with other concerned locals by emailing ridleyrdneighbours@gmail.com 

Backstory: Kingsland plan failsTailgating to park free in Dalston; Hackney’s no-car policy crashes; Seasonal bargains in Dalston; Hackney to Croydon at lastDalston traffic makeover

extinct©DA0419: HertfordCanal, Hackney Wick, © david.altheer@gmail.com 050419
Apocalyptic: Hackney street art warns of what could happen if we do not change our ways

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