Residents react to car park charge plans

Bournemouth council’s plan to impose parking restrictions and charges on many of the town’s free car parks has come under scrutiny from the public.

Worries over abuse of the car parks from school drop-offs, football fans and employees of nearby companies sparked the plans but the public reaction has forced councillors to hear alternatives to the plans tomorrow.

Local resident, Kerry Jones, said: “I understand why they’re doing it because you’ve got all these places wanting to use it as well as the park users and they might as well capitalise while they can.

“But the restrictions at Solent Meads would be annoying because I like to walk my dogs there.”

One of the main reasons for the restrictions around Kings Park and Queens Park are due to the heavy use by AFC Bournemouth fans on matchdays.

“We already have a problem with parking at the moment, car parks are regularly getting filled” said Cherries superfan, Ian Wheadon.

“If we (AFC Bournemouth) get promoted then we will only need more parking. So if these plans go through then the problem would get worse.” said Mr Wheadon.

Other locals have turned to twitter to voice their opposition to the plans. Ian Kirk (@ballywhooo) said: “Bonkers! Bournemouth badly needs visitors and shoppers! More parking charges are NOT what is needed!”

Emma (@thestylebox) added: “Wow #Bournemouth town centre is dead. No wonder retail is suffering. Why not make the parking free to encourage shoppers???”

A spokesperson of the group who developed the plans has said that they were intended to ensure genuine users of the parks could continue to do so and that the facilities were not being abused.

Main image credit: Tom Dale

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