ANGRY councillors have roasted Barrow shipyard bosses for dragging their feet over providing new car parks for staff.

Members of Barrow Council’s planning committee called on BAE to “pull their fingers out” and deliver new car parks for employees.

At a meeting at the town hall on Tuesday, councillors had been set to decide on a new planning application for a temporary 746-space car park at Dova Way, Barrow Island, for use by shipyard staff.

But the committee voted to halt the decision so council staff can hold fresh talks with the company later this month.

Cllr Brendan Sweeney said: “They’ve basically got to pull their fingers out and get these car parks done.”

Cllr Sweeney said the Dova Way site – prime employment land on the Waterfront development and reclaimed using taxpayers’ money - should be luring new firms to Barrow, not housing hundreds of cars.

“This land should be in use now by the firms doing the work in the shipyard. What we’re getting is application after application for car parks to accommodate people to come from elsewhere in the country to take money back out down the A590,” said Cllr Sweeney.

The Dova Way site would involve shipyard staff parking up and then catching a shuttle bus to work.

But Cllr Sweeney said many staff would regard it as too far away and not use it - exacerbating the problem on Barrow Island.

Landowners Cumbria County Council have agreed to lease Dova Way to the company as a temporary car park for three years but Barrow Council have blocked that, saying 18 months should be more than enough.

Planning committee member, Martin McLeavy said the company should not need three years.

He said: “By the time three years are up, the workforce could have started to reduce and they might knock any other car park plan on the head – that’s my cynical way of looking at it.”

Committee chairwoman Cllr Ann Thomson said the company had submitted several applications for staff car parks to the council but was not getting on with them quickly enough.

She said: “It’s no good putting in applications and then never building them. It doesn’t help the residents of Barrow Island at all.”

Council planning manager Jason Hipkiss said he would take the committee’s sentiments to the meeting with the company.