A PARKING free-for-all in Witney has prompted calls for wardens’ shifts to be extended into the evening.

West Oxfordshire District Council’s community wardens work between 8am and 6pm, leading to parking on double yellow lines out-of-hours.

In Corn Street, motorists frequently park on double yellow lines in the evenings between the Market Square junction and the first set of bollards.

Councillor Andrew Coles said drivers are being forced to mount the kerb and it is only a matter of time before someone is hurt.

The district council said it would look into the issue and said on occasion wardens do work into the evening to carry out targeted enforcement.

Mr Coles, district council Labour member for Witney Central, said: “There is quite a serious public safety concern because a number of vehicles are forced on to the pavement in order to get through on the road because it is so jammed up by illegally parked cars.

“It is particularly bad in the evening once the parking wardens finish for the day. On Thursday night I counted 10 cars illegally parked.

“I would like to see some wardens working into the evenings to do random and spontaneous checks.”

Chief Inspector Colin Paine, area commander for West Oxfordshire, said: “I am more than happy to support their wardens as and when we receive requests to do so.”

Witney Traffic Advisory Committee chairman Jim King, who is also a Witney Town Council member, said: “It is dangerous there because, with cars parked along the road, you are trying to get three lanes of traffic through.”

Mr King said he would also like to see the traffic bollards along Corn Street removed to improve the illegal parking situation and the flow of traffic.

But Rodney Rose, Oxfordshire County Council cabinet member for transport, said the bollards were installed to improve public safety and would not be removed.

He said: “Do you want speed to go up and have someone killed because of a speeding car?”

The district council head of community services Bill Oddy said the authority had been informed there could be a problem in Corn Street and it would look into it.

The council took over enforcing parking regulations in the district from police in January 2010.