“LUDICROUS” parking restrictions will ban seaside visitors from using a popular car park during the summer.

About 20 spaces on Eastern Esplanade, which are usually taken up by tourists and residents in the summer, are now off limits.

Castle Point Council used to be in charge of the bays, at the Seaview Avenue end of Eastern Esplanade, but didn’t have the manpower to enforce regulations banning parking between 9am and 8pm from Good Friday to September 30.

But the South Essex Parking Partnership has taken control of the spaces and has decided to enforce the restrictions.

Andrew Cameron, of Eastern Esplanade, said: “It’s ludicrous.

This is a public car park. I can’t understand why they would want to stop people parking there.

There’s nowhere for them to buy a ticket. They are making money out of fining people.”

The parking wardens will also stop residents parking along roads off Eastern Esplanade. The closest car park for residents will be Lubbins, in Eastern Esplanade, which will now also charge drivers during the summer under new Castle Point Council rules.

Dave Blackwell, leader of Canvey Island Independent Party, said: “This is ridiculous.

Bureaucracy is ruining commonsense.

“It will be outrageous if they do it. It’s the only car park in that area for people to walk their dogs, take their kids to the play area, and walk along the seafront.

“There’s also the sailing club there which has demand for parking and those visiting residents in Beach House Gardens.

“It’s totally wrong and total nonsense. Haven’t they got anything better to do?

“There’s less and less parking for people, there’s more cars on the road and they are making it more difficult for people to park.

“They need to get their act together and be more lenient.”

A spokesperson for South Essex Parking Partnership said: “The partnership is enforcing what is legally enforceable.

“In order to prevent congestion in the area, parking restrictions are imposed during what are deemed to be the busiest times of the year.

“This would have been as a result of requests from residents living in the local vicinity.”