Plans to construct a new car park for anglers has rekindled a long-standing dispute with residents – some of whom claim the fishermen are “not welcome”.
Mr John Maple, of Vauxhall Angling Club (VAC), has submitted to Milton Keynes Council an application relating to land and a lake next to Greensand View and west of Eastaff Croft, in Woburn Sands.
Plans detail ‘the construction of an anglers car park on a landfill lake known as The Shovel, the widening of an existing pedestrian/vehicle access and retrospective permission for fencing around the site’.
Fourteen parking spaces are proposed.
The current owners of the lake – a former clay extraction pit for brickmaking – and surrounding land are O&H Q7 Ltd, with whom VAC have an extended lease.
In 2017, a meeting with Woburn Town Council resolved that an anglers car park was the ‘solution to local parking problems’.
VAC said local on-street parking by anglers had caused “significant difficulties for residents”, mainly because of an already high local demand for space.
However, residents have said the new car park plans are “wrong”, that the anglers are “not welcome” because they ‘spoil the area’, and that an entrance from Bow Brickhill Road is preferable.
VAC maintain however the Bow Brickhill Road access is “unmaintained” and “unusable”.
It also claims residents are “under the mistaken impression” the lake is publicly accessible parkland, adding that despite “considerable improvements” to lake access over the years by VAC, there has been “problems of trespass” and residents have “taken to walking dogs around the lake causing significant problems with dog fouling”.
There has also been swimming in the lake and trail bike use.
Residents however claim the excrement is from the anglers.
“Having objected to the previous application, I object to this application on the same grounds,” wrote Mr Dan Connall.
“This car park is situated in the wrong location, the anglers are not welcome as they show no respect for the local area dropping rubbish, blocking access to vehicles – including emergency vehicles – and the car park would encourage more anglers to stay overnight but there is no sanitation at all and so their excrement will be (as it is now) just dumped in the vegetation around the lake.”
He added: “The street, and surrounding streets, are populated with many families with small children and so increased traffic for the car park is not an option.”
Mr Kim Allen wrote: “There is direct access to the lake from Bow Brickhill Road with no houses, so this really has to be the obvious choice.
“I believe that many anglers would be happier to have access from there too, rather than cause the grievances already present.
“Put the entrance in from Bow Brickhill Road and shut off the one from Greensand View.”
Council officers will now decide what becomes of the application.