Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 2°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Poll: Tendring district’s free parking in town centres boosting high street according to council chiefs

15:37 17 July 2014

Tendring District Council leader Mick Page

Tendring District Council leader Mick Page

Archant

A popular free parking permit scheme has contributed significantly to the health of Tendring’s high streets.

shares

New figures have revealed only 4.4% of shops in Dovercourt are empty, 4.8% in Frinton and 7.5% in Clacton. The national average is 13.4%.

Council chiefs say the Tendring parking scheme – set up in 2012 to offer every tax paying household in the district a free parking permit – has been a key factor in supporting local high streets.

Mick Page, Tendring District Council leader and cabinet member for regeneration, inward investment and asset management, said he was delighted Tendring is bucking the trend. “These rates are really good news and show that our high streets are thriving in difficult economic times,” he said.

Although the free permits are not the sole reason behind Tendring’s town centre success, Mr Page believes they have proven a catalyst for increased trade.

He said: “While there will be a number of contributory factors behind this I firmly believe – and that has been confirmed by traders – that our efforts to be car-friendly and our overall parking policy are major reasons behind this.”

The scheme was introduced to encourage residents to ‘shop local’ and helped reduce the number of empty stores around the district.

Permit holders are able to use all but two of TDC’s car parks across the district from 11am every day.

In an effort to attract shoppers at a time when trade is often slow, TDC allows everyone to use the car parks free of charge after 3pm through to 8am the next day.

Darren Bradwell, chairman of Clacton Town Centre Partnership, agreed the parking permits had made a significant difference.

“Free parking for shoppers has been a big bonus for us,” he said. “I think you will find that any trader in the town centre would say the same and it has been welcomed.”

The free parking scheme has received widespread approval and attracted attention from further afield.

Mr Page said: “It has been appreciated by traders and residents alike and other councils have contacted us about the idea.

“Various business groups in other areas have been calling on their Councils to follow this lead,” he added.

Although £300,000 was set aside last year to cover the scheme and potential loss of income, it had actually been reduced by £50,000 due to the increased use of the car parks by visitors.

shares

3 comments

  • Suffolk Coastal District Council please take note FREE parking help high streets what a surprise now lets have it here as well.

    Report this comment

    A Smith

    Thursday, July 17, 2014

  • What you need to attract people is... traffic lights not car parks!

    Report this comment

    CleverReporting

    Thursday, July 17, 2014

  • Babergh car parks have 3 hrs free parking for everyone . No limit after 1pm Saturdays and all day Sunday. It works well for shoppers.

    Report this comment

    The original Victor Meldrew

    Thursday, July 17, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

India's National Disaster Response Force personnel look for survivors in a building, in Kathmandu, Nepa. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

A team of six Essex firefighters and rescue dog Darcy have been deployed to Nepal to assist with the earthquake recovery operation.

Tom Challis and Julia Carroll just before they left to travel the world in February.

The parents of Julia Carroll, from Boxford, have told how the 22-year-old made contact via Facebook to confirm she was safe after escaping Nepal earthquake.

Shawn Leek setting out on the first of seven marathons. Today he hopes to complete the challenge

Shawn Leek is feeling the pain today having run more than 180 miles in the past week - ending with the London Marathon this afternoon.

The Anzac Day parade from the Cornhill in Ipswich on Sunday led by the Ipswich Piping Society

Thousands of Australian and New Zealand forces who died during the First World War’s disastrous Gallipoli campaign have been commemorated on the centenary of the offensive in Ipswich today.

The Orwell District Scouts St George's Day open air service by the Leisure Centre in Felixstowe on Sunday

Scouts and Guides proudly raised their flags and paraded through Suffolk towns today to mark St George’s Day.

Angel Hall, missing 14-year-old girl from Leiston

A teenager from east Suffolk who was reported missing yesterday morning has been found safe and well.

Fire in Great Yeldham - stock photo

A ground floor flat was heavily smoke logged when fire crews arrived at the scene this afternoon.

Ipswich Crown Court.

A man who was banned from keeping dogs for 15 years after footage showed him punching and slapping his two Labradors has had the disqualification reduced from 15 years to 10.

The Revd Martin Dawes with his model train lay out at Woodbridge Methodist Church during the Toy and Model Train Show.

The pews were transformed into platforms and hymn sheets were discarded in favour of timetables as a church was transformed into a model railway network.

Lowestoft Town centre.

A fire broke out on the ground a semi-detached house on Victoria Road this morning.

Most read

Topic pages