Parking charge increases planned in St Neots, Huntingdon and St Ives

Parking sign

Parking sign - Credit: Archant

The cost of on-street parking in Huntingdonshire looks likely to increase from 30p an hour to 80p, despite objections.

Cambridgeshire County Council carried out a review of the charges in Huntingdon, St Ives and St Neots, which have remained the same since 1998.

It proposed to increase the hourly fee by 50p and introduce a 20p fee for every 15 minutes, while still limiting stays to a maximum of one hour.

A consultation on the changes resulted in 15 objections in St Neots, where the Market Square parking fees will be affected. People argued that increasing the amount it costs to park would “kill off the town completely”.

Other concerns included a lack of short stay spaces and that people would not visit the town centre.

St Neots Town Council objected to the increase, claiming it was not justified, and suggested that Market Square should not be designated as “on-street” parking.

It also questioned the ownership of Market Square and its Charter Rights, which remain in the possession of the Rowley family following the death of Peter Rowley, the town’s former Lord of the Manor.

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In a report for the county’s highways and community infrastructure committee, traffic manager Richard Lumley said that 65 per cent of people who responded to an informal consultation on parking agreed that on-street charges should be equal to or higher than off-street parking, currently 80p for the first hour in all town centre car parks in the district.

Meanwhile, in St Ives, town councillors asked that spaces on Market Hill should be restricted to half-hour maximum stays.

But the county is sticking with the hour limit, saying that is what the majority of people who gave feedback had wanted.

There were no comments received regarding the changes in Huntingdon.

Out of the seven county council members for Huntingdonshire, two were in favour of increased charges, while four were against. The seventh objected to the amount of increase.

Mr Lumley has recommended that Traffic Regulation Orders outlining the new fees be made and that objectors be informed.

The matter will be discussed by the highways and community infrastructure committee on Tuesday (September 23).