ELDC urged to scrap all car park charges

There is only one car park on the coast that is free all day in season and that is in Sandilands.

There is only one car park on the coast that is free all day in season and that is in Sandilands.

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Residents and business owners in Horncastle have urged East Lindsey District Council to roll out free parking in other areas of the town.

Parking charges have been scrapped at ten district council-owned car parks , including The Wong in Horncastle, Silver Street in Coningsby and Tattershall Market Place.

Vehicle owners will still have to pay at other Horncastle car parks including Tesco, St Lawrence Street and the Market Place.

ELDC leader Coun Craig Leyland said the changes had been made after the authority had ‘listened carefully’ to residents.

Paul Jackson (35), said:“I suppose the council deserve credit for The Wong but it’s hardly the most popular car park in town.

“It would be better if there was free parking in St Lawrence Street or even the Market Place. They’re much closer to the shops and I’m sure businesses would benefit.”

Anna Randall (26)said her family had never parked at The Wong because it was so far out 0f town.

She added: “If you’ve got kids or are elderly, you aren’t going to park there and then struggle back with your shopping.

“How about St Lawrence Street being free? That would boost the town.”

Roz Benjamin said: “What a shame for Horncastle that the council don’t care about the shoppers.

“They have chosen the one furthest from any shops!

“You say they have listened to the public. Surely no one in their right mind would suggest a car park there. It’s more about that car park hasn’t made them any money so it’s costing more to maintain.

“That’s more like the true picture.”

Ian Norris, owner of Captain and Cook coffee house in Church Lane, said scrapping charges at The Wong would make little or no difference.

He said: “Very few people use it. We need more free parking to help business.This town is slowly dying and parking charges are one of the main reasons why.”

In Coningsby, Alan Redfearn said: “Ending charges will help and it might stop people parking on side streets and blocking access like my drive!”

Charges at council-owned car parks in Woodhall Spa will remain.

That follows concerns raised by parish councillors that scrapping charges would damage local businesses because people would park all day – but catch the bus to Lincoln to do their shopping.

The parish council has also expressed an interest in running the car parks and utilising revenue to pay for other services.

Coun Adam Grist, ELDC’s portfolio holder for market towns and rural communities, played down hopes of more free car parks at a recent meeting of Horncastle Town Council .

Coun Grist said the cash-strapped authority – which has just implemented a series of cuts – could not afford to lose income from car parks.