Swindon & Wiltshire Business News


Car parking charges in Wiltshire to rise in February – perhaps by up to 12 percent

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Stopping in Wiltshire Council-run car parks will become more expensive from February 1 2018.

The increase is described by the council as "inflationary", but it is believed that the final rise could be around 12 percent.

The 11.8 mooted percent increase would see all-day parking increase from £6.80 to £7.50 in Bradford on Avon, £7.50 to £8.40 in Chippenham, £6.10 to £6.80 in Devizes, and from £8.80 to £9.80 in Salisbury. Other market towns will be similarly affected.

The decision comes after business and residents were invited to take part in a public consultation. They were asked whether the cost of car parking should increase, or whether financial support for bus services should be cut.

The council says 1,400 people took part in the consultation – which closed on November 23 – with 63 percent backing parking charge increases.

However, the council has faced criticism that the consultation was not widely advertised, and that notices could have been posted in car parks – but were not.

Six further revenue-raising options are due to be discussed by the council's cabinet on January 30, and will be subject to further public consultation. These include:

  • Sunday and Bank / Public Holiday charging at all car parks
  • A charge for all council-operated car parks
  • Move the free event parking offer in November and December to other times of the year
  • Base season ticket prices on the standard rate charges, which could see some permit holders face an increase of 80 percent
  • Harmonise resident's parking permit charges
  • Reduce the period of time or parking grace from 15 minutes to 10 minutes in all car parks

Bridget Wayman, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: "I'd like to thank everyone who took the time to respond to this important consultation, it really has helped us decide on this first option.

"We don't want to increase parking charges, however they have not increased since 2011 and the cost of operating car parks and public transport is rising. Along with the increasing demand on our budget, we have increased parking charges to mitigate some service reductions.

"It is vital we strike the right balance between covering the increasing costs and supporting local communities. I believe this decision, while extremely difficult, will provide the best result when viewed across all of the services we deliver."