FEARS that changes to parking charges across the region will be detrimental to business have been raised by town and parish councils.
Horncastle Town Council last week heard that ELDC are looking into the possibility of rolling out a one-size-fits-all parking policy across the entire district.
The News reported in June that the town council had formally submitted suggestions to East Lindsey’s Scrutiny Task and Finish Panel, which included free parking for half an hour, a cap on fees, and no charges after 6pm, Sundays or Bank Holidays.
Last week town and district councillor Sandra Campbell-Wardman said: “I know they [ELDC] are looking again at charging on bank holidays and Sundays, and I know we all feel strongly it should be kept free.
“Car parking will affect the viability of the town because we need to get people in.
“Coun Fiona Martin and I also called on ELDC for half an hours free parking.
“It would not cost ELDC much money because most people don’t put money in the machine to just pop to the shop or the bank, they risk it.
“There is also debate over disabled parking, because we do not want to pay for it. Although somebody did say that they are disabled, not poor.”
Coun Campbell-Wardman also added that ELDC were looking into the possibility of bringing in a level playing field for all towns, which would see Woodhall Spa being forced to charge for parking.
“There was a discussion over when we stop paying for parking,” she continued. Here it is 6pm, while on the coast it is 9pm and the likes of Woodhall do not pay at all.
“ELDC want to get a level playing field, but some parishes are making clear they feel Skegness on the coast is a different matter to our market towns.”
Coun Campbell-Wardman said there were further scrutiny meetings to be held before a final decision was made.
Coun Richard Barker, who owns a business in the High Street, said that if ELDC were looking for a level playing field “they should be looking at the minimum charges, not the maximum.”
He also added: “We’re looking for 20 to 30 minutes where people can park up for free.
“There are also 80 plus businesses in the town and the views of these need taking into consideration, not the views of these people in their Ivory Towers.
“We have to support business, times are very hard.”
A spokesman for ELDC said: “ELDC has for sometime been undertaking a detailed reiew of car parking across the District.
“This review is looking at all aspects of the car parking service.
“No recommendations have yet been agreed.
“We have written to all town councils asking for their views on car parking and these views will be incorporated into the review.”
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Weather for Horncastle
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 21 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 5 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 28 mph
Wind direction: North