TROWBRIDGE residents have slammed Wiltshire Council for scrapping their parking permit arrangements which means they will have to pay double the current rate going forward.-
Residents of The Halve were alarmed to discover that the authority was going to discontinue the parking permit scheme for local car parks, such as the one they use at Lovemead, where they paid £190 a year.
Jeremy Morgan, of The Halve, said that there is no on-street parking along this road as there is a single yellow line down the whole street, so residents either park at Lovemead or neighbouring streets.
Now residents will have to pay £390 for a standard permit to park at Lovemead, something they are furious about.
“I urge the council to reconsider this change or at least make an exception for the Lovemead car park,” he said.
“If residents choose not to, or cannot afford to, pay for the standard permits they will park on neighbouring streets which will not be popular with other residents in the vicinity, causing unnecessary friction.
“The Lovemead car park is not heavily used generally, so it is not as if the local residents parking there are causing a shortage of spaces for other users, either in the week or at weekends.
“For myself and my partner to park our cars in the Lovemead car park it will cost us a total of £780 per annum. This is over half of what we currently pay for our council tax.”
This move by Wiltshire Council is part of a wider scheme where it is putting up car parking charges to try and bridge a gap in its costs.
Fellow Halve resident Sam Robson said: “I have tried speaking with the council parking department but they’re just telling me permits are no longer being provided, but won’t comment on why.
“There has been a real lack of communication on this. We only found out about this when we tried to renew our old permit.
“My wife is now intentionally driving to work when she doesn’t need to. This may lead people to clog up other free streets which is not fair on people who live on those streets. I really hope Wiltshire Council reconsiders.”
A Wiltshire Council spokesman said: “The residents’ off-street parking schemes were put in place by the former district councils. “In 2010, it was decided by the cabinet member they would be phased out as they were only in place in two of the districts. There are fewer than 100 of these permits left, and it is important the rates are harmonised across the whole county. The current scheme will stop from September 3 and after this time residents will be offered the season ticket option. All current users of the scheme will be notified in early summer.”
Richard Mills Reporter Wiltshire Times