Council has blocked my way out to the shops

Echo: Marooned – Robert Grant on his barge in Benfleet Creek Marooned – Robert Grant on his barge in Benfleet Creek

A DISABLED pensioner claims a council is trying to force him from his houseboat after blocking off an access road to Benfleet Creek.

Robert Grant, 65, has lived in a converted barge in a run-down boatyard off Canvey Road, Canvey, for the past 14 years.

He cannot drive, has a bad back and can only walk with two sticks. Because of this, he is reliant on friends, who usually drive into a makeshift car park near his boat and transport him to the shops.

However, Essex County Council has blocked the entrance to the area with mounds of earth, which it insisted yesterday had to be done to keep out flytippers.

Mr Grant said: “Because of my condition, I need someone to pick me up and take me shopping, so I can buy food. Otherwise I’ll die.

“Now the car park has been blocked-off they have to wait for me on the main road. I have to try to walk up a slope to get there, which is dangerous and really difficult for me.”

Mr Grant thinks the council is trying to force him to move from the boat and close down the boatyard. He feels he is being punished for the untidy state of the rest of the site.

He said: “It has been like a rubbish tip down here for years, but I still live here and they are making my life nearly impossible by doing this.”

Tracey Chapman, county councillor responsible for highways and transportation, said: “The land in question is not actually a car park. The area was being used as such in breach of planning regulations. There is no official vehicular access and cars have entered over the kerb.

“There has also been a large amount of flytipping on the plot.

“Essex County Council was approached to resolve the problems and the only way we could prevent them from happening again was to install an earth bund to stop illegal access.”

Comments (17)

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3:09pm Fri 24 Feb 12

mr_happy says...

That's about right. The councils just make it difficult for one person instead of looking at things in a logical way. I am afraid mate, you don't matter to the council. I hope they see sense and sort this out for you, but don't hold out hope. Once the council get their theeh stuck into something, they will not let go. Well they have nothing better to do, do they???
That's about right. The councils just make it difficult for one person instead of looking at things in a logical way. I am afraid mate, you don't matter to the council. I hope they see sense and sort this out for you, but don't hold out hope. Once the council get their theeh stuck into something, they will not let go. Well they have nothing better to do, do they??? mr_happy
  • Score: 0

3:24pm Fri 24 Feb 12

Everydaypeople says...

Whilst I feel sorry for this guy I have to say I feel the action taken is necessary. This was not a carpark it was a a muddy mess and the vehicles constantly driving on and off it left mud , dirt , gravel and debris all over the road which is extremely dangerous especially for motorcycles , I have however noticed vehicles are now parking on the pavemnt completely blocking it I hope the council quickly take action to stop thus aswell . At the end of the day there is no planning permission for a car park here .
Whilst I feel sorry for this guy I have to say I feel the action taken is necessary. This was not a carpark it was a a muddy mess and the vehicles constantly driving on and off it left mud , dirt , gravel and debris all over the road which is extremely dangerous especially for motorcycles , I have however noticed vehicles are now parking on the pavemnt completely blocking it I hope the council quickly take action to stop thus aswell . At the end of the day there is no planning permission for a car park here . Everydaypeople
  • Score: 0

3:49pm Fri 24 Feb 12

Brunning999 says...

Tough decision but correct.
Tough decision but correct. Brunning999
  • Score: 0

4:04pm Fri 24 Feb 12

alimac69 says...

Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?
Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that? alimac69
  • Score: 0

4:32pm Fri 24 Feb 12

doasilikey says...

alimac69 wrote:
Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?
I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road?

Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience".
[quote][p][bold]alimac69[/bold] wrote: Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?[/p][/quote]I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road? Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience". doasilikey
  • Score: 0

4:55pm Fri 24 Feb 12

rjsizzler says...

Surely the benefits of living on the beautiful Benfleet Creek outweigh the inconvenience of no vehicular access.

Oh, hang on.
Surely the benefits of living on the beautiful Benfleet Creek outweigh the inconvenience of no vehicular access. Oh, hang on. rjsizzler
  • Score: 0

5:08pm Fri 24 Feb 12

John T Pharro says...

Everydaypeople wrote:
Whilst I feel sorry for this guy I have to say I feel the action taken is necessary. This was not a carpark it was a a muddy mess and the vehicles constantly driving on and off it left mud , dirt , gravel and debris all over the road which is extremely dangerous especially for motorcycles , I have however noticed vehicles are now parking on the pavemnt completely blocking it I hope the council quickly take action to stop thus aswell . At the end of the day there is no planning permission for a car park here .
Correct in every point. The only thing that should have happened is that action should have been taken far earlier to prevent this and all the cost involved. I noticed a vehicle backed down the walkway that the Council left in. Looks like they now need a post put in to stop that doesn't it. Especially as it would make it impossible for Mr Grant to walk down to the road with that parked there!!! After all his friends have to pick him up from the road he says.
[quote][p][bold]Everydaypeople[/bold] wrote: Whilst I feel sorry for this guy I have to say I feel the action taken is necessary. This was not a carpark it was a a muddy mess and the vehicles constantly driving on and off it left mud , dirt , gravel and debris all over the road which is extremely dangerous especially for motorcycles , I have however noticed vehicles are now parking on the pavemnt completely blocking it I hope the council quickly take action to stop thus aswell . At the end of the day there is no planning permission for a car park here .[/p][/quote]Correct in every point. The only thing that should have happened is that action should have been taken far earlier to prevent this and all the cost involved. I noticed a vehicle backed down the walkway that the Council left in. Looks like they now need a post put in to stop that doesn't it. Especially as it would make it impossible for Mr Grant to walk down to the road with that parked there!!! After all his friends have to pick him up from the road he says. John T Pharro
  • Score: 0

5:44pm Fri 24 Feb 12

AnotherSister says...

doasilikey wrote:
alimac69 wrote:
Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?
I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road?

Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience".
He's only 65!
[quote][p][bold]doasilikey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]alimac69[/bold] wrote: Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?[/p][/quote]I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road? Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience".[/p][/quote]He's only 65! AnotherSister
  • Score: 0

5:51pm Fri 24 Feb 12

Valentino says...

There are mounds of dirt all along Canvey Road blocking access routes onto land, they first showed up when the gyppos were evicted from Dale Farm. There is a rather large one at the entrance to the field in Dyke Crescent.
There are mounds of dirt all along Canvey Road blocking access routes onto land, they first showed up when the gyppos were evicted from Dale Farm. There is a rather large one at the entrance to the field in Dyke Crescent. Valentino
  • Score: 0

5:53pm Fri 24 Feb 12

doasilikey says...

AnotherSister wrote:
doasilikey wrote:
alimac69 wrote:
Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?
I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road?

Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience".
He's only 65!
Well, he is older than me (just!) and has the air of an "old boy" about him by the look of the photo. I certainly take your point though.
[quote][p][bold]AnotherSister[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]doasilikey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]alimac69[/bold] wrote: Walking with two sticks on a boat must be quite difficult. How does he manage that?[/p][/quote]I think I was thinking along the same lines. I was thinking, blimey!, if the old boy manages to embark and disembark that boat surely he can make it across relatively level ground to the road? Still, I suppose "Council has blocked my way to the shops" gets more attention than "Council have caused me a small inconvenience".[/p][/quote]He's only 65![/p][/quote]Well, he is older than me (just!) and has the air of an "old boy" about him by the look of the photo. I certainly take your point though. doasilikey
  • Score: 0

8:36pm Fri 24 Feb 12

see what i mean says...

pity they did not do that to the pikeys stop them getting in and out, but some poor old guy feels the full weight of the council.
pity they did not do that to the pikeys stop them getting in and out, but some poor old guy feels the full weight of the council. see what i mean
  • Score: 0

9:39am Sat 25 Feb 12

upset says...

I bet he is not paying council tax, and the boat scrap yard is not paying business rates.
The car scrap yard down Haven Road had to put a screen up to hide the eyesore, why not make this lot do the same?
I bet he is not paying council tax, and the boat scrap yard is not paying business rates. The car scrap yard down Haven Road had to put a screen up to hide the eyesore, why not make this lot do the same? upset
  • Score: 0

10:22pm Sat 25 Feb 12

APR says...

That whole area is an eyesore.
That whole area is an eyesore. APR
  • Score: 0

11:06pm Sat 25 Feb 12

Everydaypeople says...

And I notice tonight someone has dug out a big enough gap to allow access and their are 4x4 s back in the "non carpark"
Let's hope the council act quickly on this blatant disregard for rules .
And I notice tonight someone has dug out a big enough gap to allow access and their are 4x4 s back in the "non carpark" Let's hope the council act quickly on this blatant disregard for rules . Everydaypeople
  • Score: 0

12:37pm Sun 26 Feb 12

upset says...

Everydaypeople wrote:
And I notice tonight someone has dug out a big enough gap to allow access and their are 4x4 s back in the "non carpark"
Let's hope the council act quickly on this blatant disregard for rules .
Lets hope the Echo do a follow up story and not just take every opportunity to knock a Council.
[quote][p][bold]Everydaypeople[/bold] wrote: And I notice tonight someone has dug out a big enough gap to allow access and their are 4x4 s back in the "non carpark" Let's hope the council act quickly on this blatant disregard for rules .[/p][/quote]Lets hope the Echo do a follow up story and not just take every opportunity to knock a Council. upset
  • Score: 0

9:54pm Fri 2 Mar 12

APR says...

Have you ever known the Echo to follow up a story.

It's like reading the front page of the Sun on here.

All headline and no story
Have you ever known the Echo to follow up a story. It's like reading the front page of the Sun on here. All headline and no story APR
  • Score: 0

9:52pm Sat 3 Mar 12

upset says...

A week has passed and no the echo has not followed up the story and the 4x4 have been on the path every day.
The Castle Point traffic wardens pass them every day as do the police and no tickets issued, when I used to launch a boat from the slip behind the barrier we always got tickets if we parked our cars there.
A week has passed and no the echo has not followed up the story and the 4x4 have been on the path every day. The Castle Point traffic wardens pass them every day as do the police and no tickets issued, when I used to launch a boat from the slip behind the barrier we always got tickets if we parked our cars there. upset
  • Score: 0

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