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Concerns over cost of car parking in Newbury

Fears that rising costs are driving shoppers away

Concerns over cost of car parking in Newbury

WEST Berkshire Council says it won’t be reducing car parking charges in Newbury, despite widespread concerns that rising costs are driving people away from the town.

The cost of a one-hour stay in the council-owned car parks has increased by 50 per cent in the past two years – from £1 an hour in 2015 to £1.50 an hour in 2017.

Sunday parking charges, previously a flat rate of £1 per day, were also scrapped last year and replaced with the higher weekday tariff.

The knock-on affect has seen tariff increases at other car parks in the town, including Parkway.

Self-employed therapist Tania Fisher said it was costing her £12 a day to park in the shopping centre.

She said: “Parkway prices have always been quite high, but they have put them up even more.”

Mrs Fisher, who has a room at Neal’s Yard Remedies, said: “Customers come in constantly complaining about it. 

“It puts people under extra stress because they are always worrying about parking going up to the next level. 

“I don’t think it’s encouraging people to come and shop in the town.”  

The problem is being further exacerbated by a shortage of spaces in the town. 

The council has admitted that there will be a shortfall of parking spaces in Newbury by 2026 unless drastic action is taken. 

Mrs Fisher said that the lack of available cheaper spaces was already manifest.

“I know the council say there are cheaper places to park,” she said. “I try to park in cheaper spaces, but there are limited spaces unless you can get in before half eight.

For more on this story see the Newbury Weekly News.

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Article comments

  • Rebecca

    24/10/2017 - 18:06

    Reduced visits to Newbury from about 2 per week to once every 2 weeks. No longer visit the coffee shops and clothes shops in town. Now make a day of it and go somewhere nice for the day and do our shopping where there is either free or cheaper parking.


  • AprillyMay

    24/10/2017 - 12:12

    I don't think it is stopping people visiting Newbury as the roads are always busy and the carparks are always full. If people are willing to pay then the council will keep charging those terrible prices. There needs to be a total boycott from everyone to get the point across and that will never happen


  • I don't have one

    23/10/2017 - 21:09

    I only visit Newbury now when I absolutely have to due to parking charges. Free at the retail park and also when you shop online!


    • Bombey

      24/10/2017 - 14:02

      If a few quid is the deal maker I suspect the retailers of Newbury are glad you are not filling up a parking space...better they be free for those willing to spend.


  • EugeneStryker

    23/10/2017 - 21:09

    There is little evidence on the impact of parking costs on people's willingness to visit a shopping area. Research that has been conducted concludes that there several interacting issues that impact decisions on where to shop. It is too simplistic to simply concentrate on charges alone. That said, I see the car parks in Newbury are often very busy and if I had a business in town I would prefer them to be full of people with the disposable income to easily afford high charges.


    • Tommy

      25/10/2017 - 09:09

      Actually I did notice the Car Parks were busy on one of my very rare visits the other day, however I don't know where all the people were because none of the shops were particularly full, & with signs of Tumbleweed blowing through the Parkway Centre it made me wonder how shops like Debenhams & co survive !!


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