IT IS a time for giving and a time for receiving, but Royal Mail customers trying to pick up their Christmas parcels are experiencing parking chaos.
Motorists say they are having to leave their cars on double yellow lines to pick up their deliveries because there are just two spaces outside the delivery office in Hawks- worth industrial estate.
Some drivers have been fined for parking illegally, but customers, including Linda Woodward, of Old Town, are asking where the Christmas spirit is.
“The traffic warden was wandering around, there must have been a good seven cars there on double yellows because there is absolutely nowhere else for them to park,” she said.
“He was wandering from car to car and tell them to move on but if there was nobody in the car he was making notes of their number plates.
“I couldn’t believe that there was a traffic warden there booking people parking on double yellow lines to pick up their packages. Where is the Christmas spirit in that?
Linda said she did not collect her package when she visited on Thursday because she did not want to run the risk of getting a ticket.
Lesley Owen, 24, of Old Town, who was at the delivery office yesterday, said: “There is nowhere to park. It is so frustrating there are only two spaces and at a time like this it makes it even worse.
“It’s too far to walk so I have to bring my car, but I had to park on yellow lines.
“There is always a massive queue here so it’s not like you can just run in and out.”
Brenda Davis, 59, of Rodbourne Cheney, said she had to park on double yellow lines, too, and wants to see a car park put in place.
A Swindon Council spokesman said: “Several businesses based at Hawksworth industrial estate complained to the council about a number of vehicles that were parked on double yellow lines severely obstructing access to their premises.
“Vehicles that park on double yellow lines are entitled to a five-minute observation period to allow loading or unloading and we found that the vast majority of drivers drove off before this period expired. Those drivers who were ticketed had overstayed the time limit.”
Royal Mail spokeswoman Valerie Antoine said: “We have extended the opening hours of our delivery offices to make it even easier for people to collect items that could not be delivered first time.
“If customers do not wish to collect their items, they can arrange a redelivery free of charge. We can arrange for the item to be redelivered.”
The office will be open from 6am to 7.30pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 6am to 8pm on Wednesday, 6am to 5.30pm on Saturdays in the run up to Christmas and for this Sunday only 8am to 12pm. To arrange redelivery visit www.royalmail.com or call the number on the delivery card.