Councillors join fight over car park plans

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DISTRICT councillors representing Stamford have backed a bid to stop Wharf Road car park in the town becoming short stay.

South Kesteven District Council will decide at a cabinet meeting on February 7 whether to go ahead with the plan, which would mean Cattle Market car park would be the only long stay car park in the town.

If approved, Wharf Road would become short stay on April 1 with prices rising from £3 for an all day ticket to £8 for more than four hours.

Stamford town councillors, who also sit on the district council, said the “appalling” plan would hit businesses.

Coun Maureen Jalili (Lib Dem) said: “I hope the district council will take notice of the strength of feeling in the town and reverse this idea.

“We have got lots of parking problems in Stamford and this would just make things worse, as well as being detrimental to the economy.

“We need to attract people to the town.”

Coun Bob Sandall (Ind) said: “I think this idea would mean the closure of a few more shops in the High Street in Stamford, which is the last thing we want to happen.

“It does concern me that some district councillors are ploughing ahead with this idea and not listening to the views of Stamford district councillors because we are all dead against it happening.”

Coun Sue Sandall (Ind) said: “I know Wharf Road is a busy car park so I don’t understand why they are doing this.”

Coun Christine Brough (Lib Dem) said: “It’s appalling that the cost would go up by so much if you wanted to stay for a long time.”

Coun John Harvey (Con) met with the district council’s chief executive Beverly Agass and the head of assets Paul Stokes on Tuesday to present a petition.

That petition had more than 800 signatures, which were collected by Bill and Caroline Strain, of Danegeld Place, Stamford.

The Mercury is also urging readers to sign petition forms and coupons to present to the district council.

Coun Harvey said: “It was a constructive meeting but they said they needed to know the reasons why people wanted Wharf Road to remain long stay.”

The district council has put together a report based on ticket sales, which showed two thirds of users stay for a maximum of three hours, and Coun Harvey said this was reiterated at his meeting.

He said: “Beverly and Paul said it would be an advantage to a lot of people to have it short stay. They didn’t see how people would be disadvantaged.”

Coun Harrish Bisnauthsing (Lib Dem), Coun John Dawson (Ind) and Coun Sam Jalili (Lib Dem) were unavailable for comment.

The Mercury has a petition on this website, just go to the homepage and click on the link in the top right corner.