FREE PARKING in Salisbury to help city after nerve agent attack

Maltings Car Park Salisbury 2 (Faye Tryhorn)

Published by The Spire FM News Team at 7:00am 21st March 2018. (Updated at 1:47pm 21st March 2018)

Wiltshire Council's making parking in city centre car parks FREE from this weekend (March 24th).

Parking in Salisbury's city centre car parks will be FREE all day, every day from this Saturday (March 24th) UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.

The announcement from Wiltshire Council comes as the huge investigation into the nerve agent attack in our city continues.

Many local businesses have reported a huge fall in footfall with one describing Salisbury as as a "ghost town."

The authority says the move to introduce free parking has been made in response to feedback from local  businesses.

Baroness Jane Scott, leader of Wiltshire Council said:

"We know people are rightly concerned about Salisbury, and it is important we encourage residents and visitors to enjoy our beautiful and historic city and to promote that is is very much business as usual."

Wiltshire Council had previously rejected calls to suspend parking charges in the city centre although it announced free parking at the city's five sites initially until Easter Monday, that will now be extended too.

SO WHY THE U-TURN?

Well it follows a meeting of officials to come up with a recovery plan for our city.

The economic recovery group met on Friday (16th March) and heard from local business leaders, the city council, our MP and government representatives.

Leader of Wiltshire Council Jane Scott told Spire FM having heard all the evidence then "the council has listened and acted." 

Culver Street car park (Mike Draper)
Culver Street car park is one of the car parks included in the free scheme

There are some terms and conditions to the changes though - including to make sure you stick to the normal time limits for parking in the respective car park you choose - scroll down for further details.

WHERE CAN WE GO?

The list of car parks involved is as follows:

  • Brown Street
  • Central
  • College Street
  • Culver Street
  • Five Rivers Leisure Centre
  • Lush House
  • Maltings
  • Millstream
  • Salt Lane
  • Southampton Road

Salisbury Railway Station and the Riverside car park are not on the list as they are not run by Wiltshire Council. 

New Parking Machine Salisbury Central Car Park
No need for change at one of these for a while!

The OLD GEORGE MALL car park will also be getting involved in the scheme.

Manager Jon Osgood told Spire FM: 

“Supporting local businesses and encouraging visitors to the city is paramount for us here at Old George Mall, therefore we can confirm that we have waived our parking charges Saturday (24th March). Customers will be able to park for free, all day until further notice.”

 

There's no end date in place for when the parking charges might be reinstated at this stage.

Jane Scott told Spire FM:

"It will certainly be after Easter, my view is that we will wait till the city is back to normal, that all the work on sites that are closed off are finished. We will wait and keeps this under review."

HOW MUCH WILL THE MEASURE COST ?

If the free parking lasts as long as a month then it will cost Wiltshire Council over £100,000.

The local authority says it does have have reserves to pay for this but will be looking to get money back from the government.

LISTEN:

Hear more from Baroness Scott about the parking charges below:

ONE THING TO REMEMBER:

Many of the Wiltshire Council run council parks have a normal maximum stay of no more than 3 hours.

We're being reminded that time limit WILL STILL APPLY, so anyone parking for longer than that that in car parks could still face parking tickets.

Parking wardens will still be checking vehicles are sticking to the rules

In a statement the authority said:

"(This) will help encourage shoppers and visitors to access everything the city has to offer. Anyone using a short stay car park will still have a maximum stay of 3 hours to ensure the spaces can be used by as many people as possible."

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