Dec 27 2012 By Louise Reilly
As mourners paid their final respects to a long-serving East Kilbride teacher, traffic wardens were slapping parking tickets on their cars.
So busy was the funeral of Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School teacher Anne McGhee, at St Bride’s Church, funeral-goers were left scrambling for parking spaces.
Those who finally parked at nearby Avondale Avenue for the hour-long service returned to their cars to find the meanies had struck.
And as South Lanarkshire Council were making a killing in parking fines revenue, mourners were donating almost £500 to a breast cancer charity, the disease which claimed the life of the much-loved 57-year-old teacher.
One shocked funeral-goer, who was at the receiving end of a £60 fine, which is halved if it is paid within 14 days, slammed the wardens for their insensitivity.
She said: “It was such a busy funeral as family, friends, colleagues, present and former pupils turned out to pay their respects. There could have been up to 40 cars parked in Avondale
Avenue and all of them got a ticket.
“It must have been evident to the wardens the car owners were at a funeral in St Bride’s and would only be there for a short time, yet they saw fit to slap parking tickets on their windscreens.”
The angry dad of another mourner, a 23-year-old former pupil of Mrs McGhee, said: “They must have known these people were at a funeral in St Bride’s and would only be there for the length of the service, but they still wrote parking tickets,” he said.
“My son hadn’t realised he was parking in a permit-only area. If this had been the funeral of some dignitary, I doubt very much they would have been out issuing tickets.”
A spokesperson for South Lanarkshire Council said: “We generally take a sympathetic view to vehicles parked on yellow lines outside places of worship when services are being held.
“On this occasion we were unaware a funeral was taking place.
“However, we were alerted to serious parking problems in the area by residents and the council’s parking attendants responded to the complaint. The residents also contacted the police who were also in attendance. Given the circumstances which have been brought to our attention we will arrange for the 17 tickets issued during the service to be cancelled. It should be noted that there is public car parking available at Atholl House which is within a short walking distance of St Bride’s Church.”