HANDS OFF: Campaigners at Priory Park
Marchers against Southend Council's latest scheme to deal with traffic problems in the area walked from Priory Park to the Civic Centre in protest at the plan.
The latest proposal by council transport bosses is to turn Priory Crescent into a dual carriageway, which park protesters claim will cost a 'good deal' of park land.
The council's current proposal to tackle the traffic congestion was published in their newsletter Civic News.
Shaun Qureshi, from pressure group Parklife, said the article was 'totally inappropriate' for a scheme of its size.
He added: "It is ill-suited to put this type of article in the newsletter with the impact the scheme will have. This is the major consultation with the public, and the replies have to be returned by January 4.
"It is my feeling that if you do not respond then you are giving a yes-vote to the scheme."
A petition opposing the scheme of more than 1,000 signatures has been collected by Parklife and will be handed to Southend MP Sir Teddy Taylor this week.
The pressure group collected the names at the weekend.
Mr Qureshi added: "The response from shoppers was phenominal, 1,117 letters were completed and will be handed to Sir Teddy at his surgery on December 15."
Council leader Charles Latham said they would be taking into account the views of all 170,000 residents in the town.
He added: "We feel the scheme we are proposing is quite acceptable - only the cycle path and pavement will run through the park, which is better than next to a busy dual carriageway."