MOTORISTS have slammed a change in parking restrictions on a Cirencester road as ‘unfair’ and ‘sneaky’ after receiving tickets at a spot they have used for years.

A number of drivers have complained about the recent flurry of penalties for using on-street bays in Querns Lane.

Maggie Midgeley, who works at a Cirencester estate agents, said she received a £70 fine despite using the same spot for seven years, while Jack Priestnall, 21, who lives on Lewis Lane, says he’s used the spaces for more than a year, but has suddenly been slapped with three fines over the last couple of weeks.

Maggie said: “Everybody has been parking there but nobody realises it’s a restricted area. The council needs to make it a lot more prominent that you can’t park there.

“I’ve parked there all day before and I’m disappointed to get a fine after parking there for so long.

“I feel that we are being penalised all the time, there’s very little parking in Cirencester.”

Michael Smits, who owns One for One Hair on the corner of Cricklade Street and Lewis Lane, said he is now constantly rushing out to warn people.

“Overnight, as of about three weeks ago, they decided you can’t park there anymore”, he said.

“There was no warning or anything, they were just booking tickets.

“Standing in the salon, we see people parking their car there and they look for a sign but the sign is far too far away from the parking bay itself so it’s not very clear.

“Cirencester parking is a nightmare as it is and this is being done in such an unfair way, it’s sneaky."

Jack added: “I’ve lived on Lewis Lane for a year and I’ve been parking in Cirencester for three years.

"It happened to my housemate as well. There’s no fair warning.”

Maggie and Jack both said they would be appealing the fine.

In response, Jim Daniels, parking manager at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “There has not been a sudden increase in fines issued on Querns Lane.

“Due to the parking signs being vandalised, enforcement action was temporarily stopped.

“Once the signs are back in place, the original parking restrictions return to normal.

“We would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused.

“Our advice to motorists is that if a driver is not sure that they can park safely and legally to find an alternative spot.”