An organisation championing the rights of pedestrians has called on residents to say no to pavement parking in East Oxford.

Consultation is currently under way on plans to introduce permit parking in the Divinity Road and Magdalen Road areas of the city.

The scheme controversially includes allowing cars to park partially on pavements in some roads.

But Oxford Pedestrians’ Association said this would turn the area’s roads into “hostile environments”.

Chairman Paul Cullen said: “The street should be a community space where children can meet their friends, and neighbours.

“It should not be a place where you have to walk single file between narrow canyons between garden fences and parked cars.

“Walking these streets alone in hours of darkness is going to be a frightening experience for many people, and we believe these proposals are going to create hostile environments.”

Mr Cullen said he believed there were other options, which would not require cars being permitted to park on the pavement, and urged the council to reconsider.

When permit parking was introduced to parts of North Oxford, parking spaces were drawn partly on the pavement in some areas, and Mr Cullen said the effects of the scheme there should be reviewed before it was decided to introduce it to elsewhere.

He said: “They need to establish what the true level of demand is after parking controls have been implemented.

“There is a view among the community that pavement parking is a problem, and simply formalising it won’t resolve the problem.”

The consultation period runs until Monday. Full plans of all the streets involved are available on the Oxfordshire County Council website, located at Nearly 200 people attended an exhibition about the proposals at The Regal, in Cowley Road, last month.

In an initial round of consultation carried out earlier this year, 323 people — or 37 per cent of those surveyed — said bays marked partly on pavements were unacceptable.

Twenty-two per cent of those surveyed said the measure would be acceptable, with a further 32 per cent saying it would be acceptable with provisos.

Mr Cullen said: “We think there is an opportunity here – a possible turning point.

“We do not believe it is too late for changes to be made.”

County councillor Ian Hudspeth, cabinet member for transport, said: “The idea of pavement parking is to try and maximise the amount of parking spaces.

“Oxford Pedestrians’ Association is making their view known and quite a few people agree with them, but a significant proportion of people have said they want pavement parking because it will be a solution to their parking problems.

“I am grateful for people expressing their concerns so we can take a balanced view.”