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Councillors under fire over car park

PUBLISHED: 12:48 08 January 2009 | UPDATED: 12:43 03 July 2010

COUNCILLORS have been accused of “digging their heels in” over plans to take over the running of a village car park to alleviate congestion in neighbouring streets.

COUNCILLORS have been accused of “digging their heels in” over plans to take over the running of a village car park to alleviate congestion in neighbouring streets.

Marie Field, labour borough councillor for Caister, believed the parish council deferred a decision on whether to take on Beach Road car park because it was concerned about the costs involved.

However, the reason for the delay given at Monday's parish council meeting was to get more information from borough councillor Graham Plant, cabinet member for regeneration and tourism, who had proposed the parish took over the car park from the borough.

This would mean the parish would meet the costs from either its own budget or through council tax increases, enabling tourists visiting the village to park free all year round, rather than clogging up village streets.

Residents in Allendale Road and Lacon Road had signed a petition organised by Cllr Field and presented to Cllr Plant, calling for an end to charging on the Beach Road car park.

But Mrs Field said: “They are digging their heels in. It is basically about money, they are worried it is going to cost this and cost that, but it won't cost them a lot. They could even make money by holding special charity days to raise money for the car park.

“It would also be beneficial for businesses in the village. They could erect a sign saying 'Free parking this way'.”

Parish council chairman Tony Overill told the meeting the car park operated free from the start of November until the end of April and that most tourists already had their own parking spaces at holiday camps in the village.

However, Mrs Field refuted this, saying many other visitors came to the village from more local places such as Great Yarmouth, Wroxham and Winterton, but rather than paying to park in the car park, were leaving their cars in village streets in front of residents' homes.

A decision on the car park charges will be made after parish councillors have met and discussed the options with Mr Plant.


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