New charges for Cheltenham Borough Council car parks


Parking charges are set to change next month for the first time in eight years.

On 1 March, the borough council will be introducing changes to the car park charging regime in its car parks, informed by recommendations made in an independent parking strategy report. The council is also looking to make capital investment in its car parks, which will include the phased upgrading of parking machines to take card payments, including contactless, improved lighting, resurfacing and other environmental works.

New signage reflecting the revised charges and reprogramming of parking machines will also be introduced from 1st March.

Mike Redman, director of environment said: “In June 2017, the council’s Cabinet approved the parking strategy, which was endorsed by a cross-party working group, including the principle of some changes to parking charges based on the location of each car park. In certain cases, changes to the duration of parking periods have also been made to help manage congestion. Essentially, we are aiming to balance the cost and convenience of car travel against other more sustainable modes of travel, such as public transport, walking and cycling, whilst trying to create a higher turnover of parking spaces for visitors and those accessing local services closer to the town centre.

“Results from a survey carried out for the authority indicated that residents and visitors generally felt that having a good availability of parking spaces and payment options was more important to them than the level of charges when planning their visit.”

The new charges will not apply immediately in Regent Arcade, which will be brought in when the new parking system goes live later in the year.

Cllr McKinlay, cabinet member for development and safety, said: “Parking charges are always an emotive issue and increases will never be popular, however this is the first review for 8 years and the council has looked to ensure that charges are in line with other towns regionally, with a similar offer to Cheltenham.

“All income brought in from parking charges in Cheltenham is ploughed back into local services, including car parking and parks and gardens maintenance, helping to ensure the quality of the town’s offer to visitors and residents alike.

“The council is committing to invest £400,000 into improving the town centre car parks.

“In some cases, charges are being held at the same level or are even reducing, so if cost is an issue it may pay customers to consider alternative parking locations.”