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Council considers free parking in town

Mark Cordell (Bid4Bury chief executive) is looking to get free parking after 3pm on Tuesdays to encourage shoppers into town

Mark Cordell (Bid4Bury chief executive) is looking to get free parking after 3pm on Tuesdays to encourage shoppers into town

Free parking could soon be introduced in Bury St Edmunds town centre.

The proposal, on which St Edmundsbury Borough Council is due to make a decision on Tuesday, would see free or subsidised parking in the town once a week.

Last Thursday, at the council’s annual business ratepayers meeting, Cllr John Griffiths, leader of St Edmundsbury, said the council was considering which day would work best - Tuesdays or Thursdays.

He said the proposal was being considered as a way to attract more people to the town.

“We want to make sure Bury remains an attractive place, not just to work and shop, but to visit places like the Abbey Gardens,” he said.

Mark Cordell, chief executive of town centre improvement organisation Bid4Bury, had previously suggested a ‘free from three’ parking scheme be introduced on Tuesdays, a day his business members say is often their quietest.

He said: “I’m delighted that it seems like the council are looking to help out the businesses in the town by introducing some free parking.

“This gesture will be greatly appreciated by businesses during such a difficult trading period and gives everyone an opportunity to get more people into our lovely town.”

If introduced, he said he hoped it would apply to all of the town’s car parks, to ensure the scheme was ‘clear, uncomplicated and user-friendly for consumers’.

He added: “If this happens, I’d be looking for our businesses to provide a variety of incentives to get more people into the town.”

St Edmundsbury Borough Council was unable to release any further details of the proposal this week.

A spokeswoman said: “Naturally any free parking affects the overall budget, and therefore the decision to go ahead depends on budget adoption at full council next week, so we will not discuss any detail until the budget is approved.”

 

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