The end of the road for parking offer
Sunday 26th January 2014 @ 10:30 by Max Wieland

Drivers are being warned that a parking offer in Tameside has now ended as part of a review of charges.

Tameside Council decided last August to remove the free after 3pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday parking offer to help it meet its challenging savings targets.

However, the implementation of this change was postponed until this month as part of the arrangement to offer free December parking to support the local economy during the crucial pre-Christmas shopping period.

Charges will now be introduced from this month as originally proposed and notices are currently being placed on car parks to advise drivers.

Tameside Council Executive Member Cllr Peter Robinson said: “Over the last three years the Council has undergone 41 per cent cuts to its funding with more cuts to come.

“We’ve had to review all services to ensure they remain efficient, effective and affordable and where possible we must maximise external income to help sustain other critical frontline and statutory services such as supporting the most vulnerable members of the community including children and older people.

“Given this challenging financial situation, it is important that the Council’s car park charging regime covers the costs of the service and are competitive with other service providers.

“We simply can no longer afford to provide this long-term free parking offer.”

He added: “However, we’ll continue to work hard to support the local economy and help the borough’s town centres improve their offer and remain attractive to shoppers.

“Examples of this include our work with town teams as well as continued investment in town centre redevelopment and infrastructure.

“We also hope to run the free December parking offer again this year to help boost trade and showcase our town centres during the busy festive season.”