Reduced station parking charges branded 'failure'

PUBLISHED: 13:46 12 July 2009 | UPDATED: 16:04 11 May 2010

Cllr Susan van de Ven

Cllr Susan van de Ven

A REDUCTION in parking charges at a village station has been branded a failure by a councillor. Following pressure from residents, train operator First Capital Connect (FCC) agreed to reduce the cost of parking at Meldreth Station from £2.50 per day to £1

A REDUCTION in parking charges at a village station has been branded a failure by a councillor.

Following pressure from residents, train operator First Capital Connect (FCC) agreed to reduce the cost of parking at Meldreth Station from £2.50 per day to £1 a day on a trial basis.

The three month trial came to an end at the end of June, but Cllr Susan van de Ven believes the reduction in cost had "no impact" anyway.

She said: "It would appear that the £1 charge has had little or no impact on parking patterns - the car park has remained only partially used ever since parking charges were introduced back in October.

"Meanwhile, Shepreth Station car park has been mostly empty since parking charges were introduced," she said.

Parking charges were introduced at both stations earlier this year, and the move caused anger amongst villagers living nearby, who claim many commuters are now parking on street instead.

Cllr Van de Ven said the only solution to the problem would be to reintroduce free parking.

She said: "I will ask FCC for a review. The Department for Transport, which has been under the impression that 'improvements' to these car parks are benefiting rail users, has to be made aware."

An FCC spokesman said: "We agreed a three-month period at a reduced rate so the local council could work on traffic management control around the car park.

"Following meetings with the local community, this has been extended while we complete the disabled access ramp and further invest in the car park which included last week's accreditation with Park Mark status by the police for its high levels of security.

"Once the ramp is complete, the price of the car park will return to its original price which is very competitive for a station car park," he said.

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