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Depressing state of van row saga; Neighbours fall out in 13-year dispute.

Byline: By DAVID HIMELFIELD News Reporter

A PARKED van has been causing over a decade of dispute between neighbours.

And it's gone on so long that one family member on either side of the row is suffering from depression.

Pensioner John Crossley says 13 years of parking by his neighbour has driven him to depression.

Mr Crossley, 77, of Fernside Avenue, Almondbury, says next door's van has caused several accidents and near-misses.

The retired engineer says his neighbour, Paul Hollas, has been parking a large van on the street and it has been causing a physical and visual obstruction for over a decade.

Mr Crossley, a great-grandfather, says that every time he drives out of his path he risks a collision with passing traffic.

He says that because Mr Hollas' van narrows Fernside Avenue neighbours have had their cars damaged by passing vehicles.

He added that the argument has caused him to be diagnosed with reactive depression.

He went on: "That vehicle is there 24 hours a day. I've asked Kirklees Council for a restriction, but they want don't want to do it.

"Neighbours have had their wing mirrors knocked off.

"You get a tremendous weight of traffic and large wagons coming down Fernside Avenue.

"There have been no crashes so far, but it's just a matter of time. It's dangerous for kids crossing the road.

"I'm worse than fed up. I do not want to spend the rest of my life looking at that van. I'm not going to give up."

But Mr Hollas says he has been the victim of a neighbour with a grudge, adding that the conflict had made his wife depressed.

Mr Hollas, a caretaker, said: "Everyone is entitled to park. It's my house. There's only one neighbour who complains.

"My wife has been diagnosed with depression. She's on the highest dose. It's a load of rubbish.

"You can't please him. I've downsized my van but he's still not satisfied.

"If the council and the police don't want to get involved that's enough."

Kirklees and the police have refused to act.

In a letter to Mr Crossley they said: "Although this issue is causing you some concern the vehicle is parked legally, it is taxed, insured and holds a full MOT.

"On our visits to the scene we have not considered its parked position to constitute an obstruction."

CAPTION(S):

DISPUTE: John Crossley, outside his home on Fernside Avenue, Almonbury, points to his neighbour's van at the centre of the row
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Jul 31, 2008
Words:416
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