Churchgoers are worried parking restrictions put into place by Bexley Council will “destroy” mass attendance.

Drivers like to park their cars on the Heathfield Road outside St John Vianney Church in Bexleyheath each Sunday.

The council have put forward proposals restricting on-street parking on this road following concerns from businesses and locals.

However churchgoers are scared of what this will do for the churchgoer population.

Annie Byrne, one of the churchgoers, said: “It’s a real concern, particularly for older parishioners who will be unable to attend without being able to park. Families will also struggle to attend.

“Myself and my friends travel from Welling so this would mean our non-attendance at mass.

“The archbishop is writing a letter but we really need more support for the church.”

Fr. Michael Jones said: “If it goes ahead they will extend the parking restrictions from 8:30-5:30 on Sunday.

“350 people attend masses on a Sunday and many of them are elderly and they don’t live in the area.

“They like going to our church and most of them are in their 80s and 90s and they can’t walk too far.

“My fear is that if they can’t park easily then they will go elsewhere. It could be the end of the parish because it would not be viable anymore.”

“I don’t know if our letters will have any effect. I don’t know what to do if it goes through.”

A spokesperson from Bexley Council said: “Changes to parking restrictions around Heathfield Road have not been put in place but are still only proposals that residents and businesses are being invited to have their say on.

“The consultation runs from 8 to 29 March and we would urge all those with concerns about the changes to have their say.

“They can email or contact us in writing at London Borough of Bexley, Traffic Services, Civic Offices, 2 Watling Street (3rd Floor), Bexleyheath, DA6 7AT.

“The proposal to include Sunday restrictions, follows concerns from local residents and businesses about difficulties caused by increased levels of ‘on-street’ parking, outside of the existing Controlled Parking Zone operating hours, particularly near the town centre area.”