Rural car parks are losing £120,000 a year

SIX rural car parks - in Selsey, Midhurst, Bracklesham, the Witterings, Petworth and Bosham - are losing money.

And now Chichester District Council is arranging a series of community meetings to see what can be done to meet a shortfall of £120,000 a year.

The council is encouraging residents, businesses and parish councils to attend one of six meetings that will discuss options for future pricing structures in the car parks.

Parking charges in the six car parks were introuduced in April last year.

Said a spokesperson: “Since then, the council has analysed its figures and found that the money generated is not covering the cost to provide the car parks. It now wants to discuss options with residents, businesses and parish councils on how they would like to see the cost covered. Each community will be looked at separately, with different solutions for each.”

Kenrick Garraway, assistant director for the economy at Chichester District Council, wants people to have their say.

“As everyone is aware, all councils are constantly reviewing services so that they are able to deal with reductions in funding from central Government.

“When the council introduced charges in rural car parks, we said that we would not alter the charges for two years. We now need to work with local communities to look at how we should cover the cost of the car parks in the future.

“Each area will have different needs and requirements and so the options will be different to suit their individual requirements. We want to meet with local communities to see what their views are so that we can decide on what the best options are going forward.”

Based on current figures, the collective rural car park operations are resulting in a shortfall of over £120,000 a year, says the council.

Six meetings have been arranged, which will be held between 6pm and 8pm on:

l Monday 5 November – Bosham Centre, for Bosham

l Tuesday 6 November – East Wittering Village Hall, for Bracklesham

l Wednesday 7 November – Selsey Parish Hall Complex, for Selsey

l Thursday 8 November – United Reform Church Hall, for The Witterings

l Tuesday 13 November – Capron House, for Midhurst

l Wednesday 14 November – Leconfield Hall, for Petworth

If you are unable to attend a meeting and want to have your say, visit www.chichester.gov.uk/carparkconsultation .

The closing date for responses is Friday November 30.