Councillors left in the dark over free parking scheme

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Town councillors have admitted defeat in their attempts to check whether a recent free parking session in Horncastle was a success.

Last month, East Lindsey District Council scrapped charges in some of its town car parks on a Sunday as part of a national scheme to boost local businesses.

The Town Council was keen to see whether the scheme led to an increase in visitors.

However, ELDC say they don’t have any figures available - because their parking machines were switched off for the day.

As a result, ELDC say they can’t estimate how many people parked in the town and whether the free parking had been a success.

Town councillors have contacted local businesses owners to see if there was an increase in trade but, as yet, had not had any feedback.

There have been strong calls from businesses to either scrap or reduce parking charges amid claims the cost is putting off potential customers.

Several businesses have claimed they are struggling - or have even closed - because of the knock on effect of parking.

The free parking day was unpopular in some quarters because it came just a week after ELDC refused to remove parking charges for the town’s annual Christmas Market.