RESIDENTS in Glasgow's West End are threatening legal action after the city council announced plans for stringent new parking rules.

People living in a number of streets would have to buy annual parking permits for £50 a year and businesses would be expected to pay £700 if the plans come to fruition.

Officials are also planning new restrictions on motorists using pay-and-display spaces. They want to restrict drivers to a maximum of three hours' parking, with charges of 20p for the first 30 minutes followed by 20p per 10 minutes. The limits would operate every day from 8am-10pm.

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The council hopes to dissuade people from leaving their cars in the area and travelling into the city centre.

However, residents have received legal advice and are considering court action if the plans get the green light. Some are unhappy that they are to lose the sole use of their parking bays, which would be shared with people from outside the area.

Jean Charsley, secretary of Hillhead Community Council, said: "A lot of people in this area bought their homes because of the residents' parking and five families are already moving out."

It has lodged a formal complaint with the council.

A Glasgow City Council spokesman said one of the problems suffered by the area was commuters parking all day in the quieter, residential streets while they are at work before picking up their cars at night.

He added: "The proposed parking controls aim to prevent the area from being used by commuters as a free car park. We aim to protect both residential and short-stay business use parking as the current model can lead to businesses being hurt, with customers unable to find parking spaces."