A rise in car park fees across the Horsham district ‘will put local businesses at risk’ and ‘make life harder, perhaps impossible for shops’.
These serious concerns were raised by councillor David Holmes (LDem, Horsham Park) at the district council’s cabinet meeting last Thursday.
But what do you think? Will it put business at risk?
Is it too expensive to park already?
Do you work in the district and struggle to pay car parking charges?
Add your comments below and take part in our poll (right).
The local authority is set to freeze its share of the council tax bill, but despite saving more than £7m over the past five years, the council still has to find £1.25m over the next two years to balance the books.
But David Holmes criticised the decision to increase car parking charges - which are likely to rise by an average of 12 per cent, with some of the most popular town centre facilities increasing costs by 20 per cent.
For example, a two hour ticket at Swan Walk would cost £2.40 instead of £2.
“This will put local businesses at risk. Make life harder, perhaps impossible for some shops.”
But Conservative councillors countered by saying parking in Horsham would still be cheaper than neighbouring districts.
While plans are in place to increase fees for parking in Horsham town centre, the fate of rural car parks is still not clear.
But at the cabinet meeting last Thursday it emerged these car parks are running at a loss.