RAGING residents blasted tour bus firms for parking at Largs seafront and ruining their picturesque views.

Residents at Sandringham say the issue is also causing traffic congestion in Bath Street and putting drivers's safety at risk by leaving traffic unable to easily pass in both directions.

The matter was highlighted by Andy Adair at a recent Largs Community Council meeting - with locals saying it proves more parking is required in the town centre.

Businesses recently echoed the call for improved provision, claiming tour firms are deserting Largs in favour of more easily accessible destinations with better visitor facilities.

The nearest designated tour bus parking facility is a couple of miles out of town at the car park at Largs Yacht Haven - forcing coach companies to abandon vehicles in more central locations.

Mr Adair said: "I fear this type of parking is going to become the norm.

Independent councillor Ian Murdoch said he was aware of the problem at Sandringham and also says it highlights the need for a new multi-purpose car park in Largs.

Community councillor Margaret Wood however says there is already a solution.

She said: "Buses don't need to park near Sandringham. It should simply be a case of dropping off and picking up passengers at a central point, with the coach going on to park at Largs Yacht Haven."

Largs police sergeant Sharon Kerr, who was attending the meeting, said that she would speak to officers to make them aware of the situation.

As part of the decriminalisation process, North Ayrshire Council will take over the policing of parking matters in the town centre.

New pay car park facilities are being considered for the town centre at Lade Street and Gateside Street car parks, while a number of local businesses have signed a petition calling for a car park to be built in front of Barrfields Pavilion.

Cllr. Murdoch added: "I have long campaigned for improved parking in the town and this is proof. It's desperately needed.

"It would appear that the tour buses arrive on the day and just decide to park there. It is not encouraged.

"The bus drivers will do it again if nothing is done. It is not an appropriate place, being just in front of the ferry queue, on double yellow lines and on a pavement.

"Again it reinforces my view for additional parking - and something for coaches as a main priority.

"We need to be able to welcome cars and bus parties to boost tourism and keep the local economy healthy."