Chesterfield Borough Council defends plans for ‘relatively small’ rise in car parking charges

Council bosses say plans for a ‘relatively small’ increase in car parking charges in Chesterfield will help the authority to ‘maintain a balanced budget’ and ‘protect essential services’.

Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 11:47 am
Updated Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 11:56 am

Scores of people have contacted the Derbyshire Times to voice a number of concerns about Chesterfield Borough Council’s proposals, which we revealed on Monday.

Comments include ‘this will be the final nail in the town centre’s coffin’, ‘this is the last thing businesses need right now’ and ‘this will impact on visitor numbers’.

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Chesterfield Borough Council is expected to increase car parking charges.

A borough council spokesperson told the Derbyshire Times: “We understand the concerns about the proposed relatively small increase in parking charges.

“However, we review every two years and the price has not been increased recently.

“With the ongoing financial challenges created by Covid-19, this relatively small proposed rise will help contribute to the council maintaining a balanced budget – and ultimately protect the essential services that local people and businesses value and rely on.

“Even with this relatively small proposed increase our parking charges would remain in line with other similarly sized towns, and we will also once again be providing residents with a permit that allows free parking at certain times.

“If people were to use this to park every week for just two hours, they could save around £140 a year, and our last review showed these permits were used by around 70 per cent of residents.”

The spokesperson added: “Our town centre is the heart of our borough and we’re investing to secure its future.

“This includes improvement works like Revitalising the Heart of Chesterfield which will see a transformation of the town centre, and we have also funded a wide variety of town centre events which aim to increase the number of people visiting our town.

“We also support local businesses through projects like the Digital High Street which aims to help retailers to trade online and further increase their sales.”

What are the proposed new charges?

The Labour-led borough council’s cabinet is due to meet on Tuesday, with members recommended to approve the following costs for the authority’s car parks for 2022-23 from April 4.

- 90p for up to 30 minutes (up from the current 80p)

- £1.70 for up to one hour (up from the current £1.60)

- £3 for up to two hours (up from the current £2.80)

- £3.20 for up to three hours (up from the current £3)

- £4.80 for up to four hours (up from the current £4.50)

- £1.70 for each hour after in short-stay car parks (up from the current £1.60)

- £5.30 for four hours plus in long-stay car parks (up from the current £5)

- £5.30 for four to five hours in Saltergate multi-storey car park (up from the current £5)

- £6.50 for over five hours/up to 24 hours in Saltergate multi-storey car park (up from £6)

- an annual parking permit will increase from £620 to £660, a monthly permit will increase from £62 to £66 and scratchcards will increase from £3.60 to £3.80

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