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Allerdale Borough Council,
Allerdale House,
Workington,
Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ

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Changes to car parking fees and charges agreed

16 March 2016

Allerdale Borough Council’s Executive committee today agreed changes to its car parking fees and charges.

It is the objective of the Council’s parking service, with the revised fees and charges proposals, to get the right balance between having a high level of occupancy and making sure that enough spaces are available for people to park, enabling more visitors into our towns.

The Council carried out an extensive consultation exercise between November 2015 and January 2016. The Council has listened to the views and concerns of residents, visitors, businesses and other organisations and made a number of changes to what had originally be proposed and consulted on. The views of the public were many and often contradictory, meaning the Council could not adopt every view of every comment made. However, the Council has sought to balance the competing needs of its different competing interests.

The final decisions include:

  • The permit for those on low incomes is to remain at £35 for three months and £70 for six months. A review will continue to be carried out on its use but, given genuine concerns from those on low incomes, sale of the permit will not now be suspended.
  • New single-town permits costing between £100-£300 a year depending on the town. There will no longer be a requirement to buy a ticket for £1 when using the permits as currently.
  • All-town permits are to increase to £400 for a year, rather than £500 as originally proposed. This equates to less than £1.10 a day for the year.
  • Increasing the tariff for short-stays in Wigton by just 5p to 50p for the first 30 minutes, rather than the 15p increase originally proposed.
  • Make the Council Offices Car Park in Wigton, disc parking with two hours free upon display of a disc with no return within three hours.
  • Not to introduce overnight charges starting at 9pm, but to start at 7pm, and it will cost just £1 through to 7am the next day. This is to address concerns from businesses in the night-time economy as well as those who use the Council’s car parks to attend community groups. Daytime operating hours will now be 7am to 7pm (currently 8am-7pm)
  • The Executive agreed with concerns that the proposed long-stay tariffs were too broad. Therefore middle-period tariffs have been introduced resulting in a new £2.50 charge for six hours parking in Wigton. The costs for the same period of time in long-stay car parks in Cockermouth and Workington is £4, with a £7 charge in Keswick.
  • A new parking permit for hotels to use for their guests, costing £450 a year - £50 less than originally planned.

In addition the Executive agreed to:

  • Make the car park in Mill Street, Maryport free to use with a disc for a maximum of two hours. Anyone wishing to use the car park on a more regular and longer period can buy one of the new permits for just £100 for a year.
  • Reduce the short-stay car charge for 30 minutes in Keswick by 15p to 50p and make it cheaper to park for up to 12 hours in long-stay car parks in Cockermouth and Wigton, where both tariffs are cut by 50p. 

Speaking at the meeting, Michael Heaslip, Executive Member for Locality and Commercial Services said: “The Council hasn’t looked at its parking charge structure for a number of years and from now on this is a great opportunity to monitor car parking usage and ensure they work towards our aim of having vibrant and sustainable towns. This is all about making sure our car parks are well used but not too full to mean people won’t be able to park. This is not a blanket approach, but we’ve looked at each particular town and the categorisation of each car park.”

“We have looked at the varied responses received and weighed the arguments up, so that where we found them convincing we have modified the proposals to address the concerns raised. We want to look at the use of the low-paid permits to ensure they are meeting the stated need. However, I’m pleased to say that they shall be kept. Our other permits remain very good value, allowing you to park 365 days a year – meaning even at £450 this equates to just over £1.20 a day. And they are comparable, if not cheaper, than what other authorities charge locally and nationally.

Speaking on the investment in the car parking service, Cllr Heaslip said: “We’ll undertake a programme of investment which will involve relining, resurfacing and new pay-and-display machines. These machines will bring real benefits for the customer meaning they will be able to pay by credit or debit card and use the pay by phone facility if they are worried about overstaying. The overnight charge means that visitors will no longer have to get up early to feed the machines, as they can pay in advance.”

The changes will come into effect on as soon as possible after 1 April 2016.

ENDS

Notes:

  1. For more information contact 01900 702526, corp.comms@allerdale.gov.uk
  2. The Council carried out an extensive consultation of proposed changes to its parking fees and charges. This started on 16 November 2016 and was originally scheduled to end on 14 January 2016. However, due to the floods of December 2016, the consultation was extended to 21 January 2016.
  3. The consultation resulted in over 1,231 responses online, and a 3,912 name petition arranged by business owners in Keswick. The Council also met with a number of organisations including parish councils. The Council also sent the consultation to a number of third sector and partner organisations for comment and received a number of written responses from organisations from throughout the area.
  4. The contents of the petition was presented to the Full Council meeting of 20 January 2016 where after a debate, it was agreed to incorporate it into the consultation exercise and be considered at the Executive meeting where the decision was to be made.
  5. Single town permit prices per year: Maryport £100 (less than 28p a day); Wigton £170 (less than 47p a day); Cockermouth £240 (less than 66p a day); Workington £250 (less than 69p a day); Keswick £300 (less than 83p a day). Day rates are based on 365 days usage.
  6. The Council is also to invest some £350,000 in new car parking ticket machines to improve the service it provides its customers. There will also be a programme of investment of relining and resurfacing of the Council’s car parks costing around £215,000.
  7. Full details of the new fees and charges can be found on the Council’s website at: http://www.allerdale.gov.uk/
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0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ