Petition calling on district council to reduce car parking charges gets hundreds of signatures

The new charges are set to start at the end of the month

The new charges are set to start at the end of the month - Credit: Archant

A petition calling on Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC) to drop new parking charges has been launched.

The petition, started by Amanda Orchard and signed by more than 750 people, calls for the district council to scrap the new parking charges for public car parks in St Neots as it will have "devastating consequences" for the town.

The petition says: "HDC have recently 'upgraded' their pay and display machines across the region and whilst undertaking this, have removed the one-hour option. The minimum option to pay for is two hours so hence they have doubled the minimum fee.

"This will have devastating consequences to town centres and cause irresponsible parking as people look to avoid designated car parks and these fees."

On Tuesday, the petition had 790 signatures from business owners and residents, who say that the new charges will deter them from visiting the High Street.

Laura Secker, St Neots resident, said: "I'm not happy about this, my GP and my dentist are in town. Going to these two places can be costly at the best of times. Now I will have to pay £1.60 for the pleasure instead of 80p. Yes it's only 80p more but that's just one example of how it will affect me."

Lea Wood told the Hunts Post: "I often pop into town do run errands and I am very rarely there for more than an hour. Removing this option is out of order and just another way to screw as much money out of us as possible."

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Another resident, Sarah Hammonds said: "I think the council have been very misleading. Everything I read about the proposed changes was it will be cheaper to park as you only pay in 15 minute blocks. Nothing that I read mentioned you have to pay for at least two hours and that price was increasing."

However, some residents have said that they would still prefer to park there, rather than in a big city like Cambridge, and the charges would not affect them.

Liz Owen said: "It's hardly breaking the bank is it? I used to live in London and parking there could be anything up to £9 an hour. We are better off here than most places. Even Cambridge is more expensive."

To view the petition visit:

Call for discussion over parking charges

A district councillor has said that he will be asking for discussions to be re-opened regarding the new parking charges in the district.

Councillor John Morris, member for Brampton, said he would request that the new strategy to be brought back to the Huntingdonshire District Council's (HDC) overview and scrutiny panel.

He told the Hunts Post: "I am going to request that the implementation of the new car parking strategy be brought back to HDC's overview and scrutiny panel"

Cllr Morris said that although he welcomes some of the proposed changes such as the pay and exit option, he "was not aware" of any plans to convert some car parks from short stay to long stay.

Cllr Morris said: "At Huntington Riverside car park, the current minimum charge of 40p for an hour is set to have a new minimum charge of £1.60 for two hours, a 300 per cent increase due to come in on August 15."

He hopes to re-open discussions at the next panel meeting on September 3.