Readers react to free parking plan

NILABE120228c1, Pay and display, Albion car park, Ilkeston.
NILABE120228c1, Pay and display, Albion car park, Ilkeston.

Readers have taken to the internet to make their views known about the two hours of free parking that the council is set to introduce in Ilkeston.

Most of you were unhappy with the 8am to 10am time period, but many agreed it was a step in the right direction by Erewash Borough Council.

“I would agree that parking from 9am to 11am would probably be of more use but, hey, any initiative is welcome,” said ‘puffin’ on our website.

And The House of Ashley Peake – a shop in South Street – wrote on Facebook: “It’s a start, however longer hours during the day or all day would be even better!”

Some of you, like Debbie Pickard on Facebook, were more sceptical: “Ridiculous! They’ve deliberately set it up to fail! Most shops open at 9am, and once school runs, etc, are out of the way, it’s at least 8.30am to 8.45am.”

Nicola Westley asked via Facebook: “Who wants to go up town at 8am when no shops are open?”

And Totally Local Ilkeston tweeted: “Is this just a case of rescheduling the clocks in the meters? The cheapest/easy option rather than a well thought-out idea?”

Council leader Cllr Chris Corbett said this week that the reason was because wardens start their patrols at 8am.

“It was felt too complicated to charge for 8am to 9am, then have two hours free, then start charging again at 11am,” he explained.

“To simply start charging at 11am would mean giving three hours free rather than two and we are concerned about the impact this would have on the council’s income.

“This exercise is for a trial period until Christmas so that we can see just what impact it will have.”

In addition to free parking from 8am to 10am, Monday to Saturday, there will be spaces dotted around car parks in the town centre which will be free for 30mins anytime of the day.

The move is set to be voted on later in the summer.