Ealing and Northfield

Southall car park mystery shopping

I will come back to the financial implications of Labour’s decision to put a new car park in Southall in a later posting. Many people think that the decision is hard to justify in terms of user demand let alone anything else. In order to test this I have decided to do some mystery shopping.

As we shop is Sainsburys West Ealing quite regularly I will test how long it takes to drive to Southall and park up at the Herbert Road multi-storey car park (HRMSCP). I have been twice already:

Saturday 5th March, left West Ealing 2:54pm, got parked HRMSCP 3:12pm, 18 minutes including about 3 minutes to drive round car park until I found a space due to someone leaving. 2 disabled bays free on arrival but all other spaces filled. Considering this is totally peak time this was a doddle. The Southall Town Hall junction was pretty horrid in and out but otherwise very easy really.

Monday 7th March, left West Ealing 1:28pm, got parked HRMSCP 1:39pm, 11 minutes overall, over 100 free spaces including 4 disabled, all very easy and low stress except for Southall Town Hall crossroads which are always a trial. But one can vroom around with ease if your engine gives you the right horsepower and save you that office meeting you were late to. If it’s high time to change your car to a swanky new one, worry not for there are many sites which offer the best of the deals. Case in point, check out this Silverado for sale, and tell me there is a better place than that to buy cars.

11 replies on “Southall car park mystery shopping”

I do have soem feedback but Im worried that this post will be deleted like like my others

perhaps there is some truth in my comments or have I hit a nerve?



Have you seen the business case for the car park or is that a state secret rather like the case for taking housing maintenance in house?



I don’t suppose that we will ever see a business case. I would love to see the return on investment figures. I can’t see how it would ever stack up.


Traders and residents have demanded a car park more parking in Southall for more than a decade.

Its not just Labour who have failed us, Tories failed when they were in charge to provide any suitable arrangements.

Perhaps this was due to the £2 investment in Southall, whilst the
‘Good for Greenford’ received over £5million (and increasing?)
Greenford now is a congestion hotspot, I can see improvements in the surroundings however the traffic is far worse..

back to the matter, I full agree that the car pakr is underused during the week, and at full capacity on the weekend, Maybe long term herbert road is planned to be demolished (we never know)

Visitors in all areas prefer to park close to where they are going to be (ie near shops) solution would be to have dual bay parking but thsi woudl be part of the CPZ committe which Phil you are a part of



Mr Singh,

I don’t doubt the demand but I would say be careful what you wish for. From my experience of driving through Southall there are too many people in too small an area. Adding another car park may make it easier to park at peak times. In that case more people will have a reasonable expectation of being able to park easily. There will be more cars on the unimproved roads and there will be even more congestion. Once you struggle to the new car park it will be easier to park but it will take you 40 minutes to cross the Town Hall junction. Great.

The CPZ panel I chair does have a draft recommendation R13 on page 22 that officers should examine dual use in all all day CPZs. The two one hour zones are a good use of road space as they are used by people outside the hours. The all day zones can only be used by residents. Allowing pay-by-phone, at a high charge and maybe limited to four hours, would provide more parking without unduly inconveniencing residents. I hope that the administration looks at this before they spend £5.5 million on a car park without a business case.


Agreed Phil,

I fully agree on dual use bays but the trial didn’t prove effective, shame as if this was implmented as a whole on all roads, this would prove a good thing.

Roads are often empty during the day as people are at work, etc. It’s the evening when they want to park and more then often they cannot!!

Oh and the B&Q site has turned into a supermarket which has decreased traffic queues coming into Southall from Hayes.
and also the B&Q site is in Hayes not Southall!

Woudl you know the capacity of Herbet Road car park??



Mr Singh,

The results of the consultation in Southall were perhaps unclear but it looked like the residents didn’t like it but the businesses did. See here:

The sign on the way in to Herbert Road says 270 spaces. On the council’s website it says 214 plus 15 disabled so 229 in all. I have noticed when I was there that there were 6 spaces hashed out by the exit. I guess because they caused congestion by the exit. You wonder if they shouldn’t be brought back into use.

There are also council car parks at Featherstone Terrace and Norwood Road. There are 450 council car park spaces in Southall. When I asked council leader Julian Bell how many spaces he was buying for his £5.5 million he didn’t know. He didn’t know how many spaces the council was providing already in Southall. You do have to wonder if lack of car park places is the problem in Southall.


Its a question which cannot be answered Phil.

However I would be intrigued as to how you would reduce the congestion, you rightly said the town hall crossing is unbreable, and with SOuthall Broadway/Uxbridge Road being the 3rd worst congested road in London, what would you do (if you could) to help reduce this??



As a resident of Southall for over 30 years, I am deeply disappointed that a new car park is going to be built.

Residents are NOT in favour of another car park. THere is too much congestion in Southall Broadway (roads leading it off it) as it is.

Does this mean that that when the car park is built, Ealing Council will remove all of the pay and display parking bays for visitors which blight the roads! I hope they do as then there is no need for these parking bays.

As far as roads being empty during the day, that is completely incorrect. I still cannot park on my road (Northcote Avenue) during the day and sometimes have to sit in my car for up to 30 mins for a space. This road is also a major rat-run to get onto Southall Broadway, for which I have complained to Ealing Council for many years but my complaints have been ignored.

Ealing Council are promoting the use of cars in Southall and the environmental and pollution problem is immense. Have they considered that?

Ealing Council are only interested in what the shop owners wanted – not what is best for the residents. I take the bus in to Ealing rather than parking my car – people can do the same in Southall. USE PUBLIC TRANSPORT. Southall is one of those places that visitors will come to regardless of the parking situation.

Also when will Ealing Council increase the number of wardens or introduce towing cars away. They did a trial many years ago which did the trick. It was amazing how clear Southall Broadway was of congestion.

Its high time Ealing Council did a major rethink and were more strict with what goes on in Southall.

Also, how about increasing the bus lane operation times to 8pm on Southall Broadway to stop people parking in the bus lane. Southall Is a complete mess imo.


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