CAMPAIGNERS say an offer to free up parking spaces near a surgery won’t solve the problem which led more than 750 patients to sign a petition.

The petition called for the taxi rank outside Shoebury Health Centre, in Campfield Road to be moved, so elderly and disabled patients can park right by the door.

Petitioners say Southend Council’s response – an offer to remove a disused rank and a few yellow lines 200 yards away – wouldn’t do much to help patients.

Petition organiser, Independent Shoebury councillor Anne Chalk, said: “It’s rubbish! It doesn’t affect the parking problems of the taxi rank in Campfield Road.

“That’s where residents who are elderly or severely disabled would choose to park – close to the surgery.

“Most of the time it’s the only place they can get to.”

She said the solution was to remove the Campfield Road taxi rank and allow unlimited parking outside the surgery, which is what the petition called for.

At present many patients simply park on double yellow lines in Campfield Road and accept a parking ticket as the price of being able to go to the surgery.

Moving the Campfield Road taxi rank would allow two or three cars to park outside the surgery.

The health centre has a 20- space car park around the back, but Mrs Chalk says the 20-yard walk involved in getting from there is too far for people with mobility problems.

Martin Terry, Southend councillor responsible for transport, said: “We will remove the unnecessary lines for the old taxi rank and hopefully that will rectify the problem.

“We’ll remove these lines that shouldn’t be there and if it’s still an issue, we will try to get it right, as originally intended.

“If it doesn’t work we will take it back to the traffic and parking working party.”