Letter: Fed up of being ‘fleeced’ by parking charges

This Isle of Wight resident doesn’t understand why he has to be ‘fleeced’ with parking charges every time he takes his kids out to the beach or park. He says it’s time for the Isle of Wight council to bring their charges in line with neighbouring councils.

Parking Meter

We always welcome a Letter to the Editor to share with our readers – unsurprisingly they don’t always reflect the views of this publication. If you have something you’d like to share, get in touch and of course, your considered comments are welcome below. This from Paul Dobson. Ed


I’d like to ask why the Council raises so much money from parking. The latest figures show that the Isle of Wight ranked 64th out of 343 councils, with a surplus of more than £3 million.

Our population is nowhere near that rank and we have one of the lowest average incomes in the country.

Being fleeced
As a parent of two under-5s, I just feel like I’m being fleeced every time I try to take them to the beach or park or get them out to another part of the Island.

I understand that Council finances are tight, but this is surely killing the Island. I drive to church on a Sunday in Newport and can’t understand why I should pay the council to do so. I look around and see the centre of Newport full of empty shops with not even an hour’s free parking to entice customers in.

Higher rates than neighbours
IOW council rake in substantially more parking money than Hampshire, East Hampshire, East Sussex, West Sussex and a host of nearby areas. Surely there are more justifiable ways of raising revenue?

Image: christine592 under CC BY 2.0

Wednesday, 14th December, 2016 11:58am

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ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2ePo

Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Letter to the Editor

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20 Comments

  1. The land our car parks stand in is owned by the council who use it to make a small profit which is reinvested in local services.

    I’d much rather that arrangement than that they were owned by a large corporation who’d divert that profit to managers and shareholders.

    Parking a car is still cheaper than using the bus for most journeys. The rights and wrongs of that fact are for another discussion!

    Finally, as a point of note, you are not paying our council to go to church. You are paying them for having a safe, accessible and convenient place to leave your car while you do so.

    There is a discount scheme payable by direct debit for regular users of IWC car parks, it might be wise to look in to that.

    Reply
    • THE ANCIENT MATELOT


      14.Dec.2016 3:47pm

      I think the council would raise a lot more money by providing wardens to issue tickets to litter droppers. Five minutes in any high Street would probably raise enough money to pay their wages for a day from smokers alone.

      As for the cost of motoring being cheaper than public transport; that is probably because the cost of travelling in our buses is also much higher than anywhere else.

      I would support the council more if they occasionally came up with some original thinking instead of the usual hiking of charges, closing and selling off public assets and facilities!

      Reply
    • Payment by direct debit for regular car park users is a good start.
      DaveIOW, do you know costs and for how long you can park?
      My thought was that say £10/month, say optional extra rates payment would allow up to an hours parking. If more was needed, then buy top up from meter. Use disc system to show arrival time etc. paid for separately of course. Given most times people only need to park for less tan an hour, say 30mins; everyone is a winner!

      Reply
  2. I couldn’t agree more. If the council is serious about regenerating the Island a good place to start would be to offer 2 hours free parking everywhere – i.e. car parks and on the roads where there are meters.
    This could be simply controlled by a parking disc clock – like they do in other areas i.e. North Yorkshire. Set the time you arrive – if you overstay 2 hours put some money in the machine or expect a ticket. Simple – would cost very little to introduce. You may even get a sponsor for the disc clocks. It would enable shoppers to use their local High Streets rather than drive to the out of town supermarkets and also enable our visitors to visit different Island towns without being fleeced.
    And before the council say they can’t afford to – 1, you must be getting thousands of pounds in extra rates from the supermarkets you’ve allowed to spring up and are still allowing to spring up and 2, think long term, the High streets are dying and need support otherwise you will find more empty shops or charity shops paying no rates.

    Reply
    • Gaz
      Maybe it’s time to end rates concessions for charity shops. After all, most are selling “new” items and they play a large part in the closure of rate-paying shops.

      Reply
  3. I share the author’s pain.

    The council commissioned a £30,000 report sometime ago with a view to having a “one island” charging regime. However before it could implement the findings, it was decided that some car parks could be hived off; Ventnor springs to mind where now the Town Council runs four car parks and has increased usage and income by reducing prices. (the IWC rents the car parks to VTC)

    Unfortunately the IW council sees the motorist as a cash cow like many other local authorities and is unwilling to give up any income, prefering to waste it on reports and then taking action that goes completely against the reason the report was commisioned.

    The IW council has gone down the road of commisioning reports in other instances and I dread to think what the regeneration report has cost. Anyone who hasn’t read this report needs to have a look at what the council is proposing wasting money on because I have read the report (all 70 pages) and the only people who will make money out of regeneration will be the consultatnts who it is recommended do a myriad of feasibility studies and reports.

    Common sense has gone out of the window as regards parking and with a seven day parking permit for holiday makers priced at just below £40 which does not include all parking places, one wonders when reality for IWC will kick in.

    Reply
  4. colinattbf


    14.Dec.2016 1:18pm

    Love the parking disk idea but I think it will probably hit parking revenues significantly. Perhaps something in between with each household receiving 100 free 2 hour tickets onto which they have to write the date and arrival time when being used. These can then be topped up by buying additional hours in long-stay parks if longer stays are required.
    Residents could then have one trip to the shops and one outing a week on the council (and it might help our small shopkeepers)!

    Reply
  5. Cornwall is worse.

    Reply
  6. Believe me, parking charges on the island are much less than many areas on the mainland. Whilst I agree with the author’s sentiment, it could be worse. How about parking permits for residents and other fees for holidaymakers……just a thought (I do appreciate also that the island relies on it’s tourist trade…..before anyone points that out)

    Reply
    • Luisa Hillard


      14.Dec.2016 3:00pm

      Residents can get special parking permits. It works out at 81p per day.

      The Council wouldn’t need income from parking if the government fully funded services. In stead the government cuts more every year, which means the Council has to generate its own income.

      Andrew Turner MP has repeatedly voted to cut funding to Councils. Anyone who voted for him must accept some responsibility for the loss of services and increased charges.

      Reply
      • Island Monkey


        14.Dec.2016 4:44pm

        Good to see you posting again so frequently Luisa. Can we expect any comments from you or your indie colleagues on the Phil Jordan conviction?

        Reply
        • Why would you? it’s all closed off – he’s stepped down from the executive, been prosecuted for doing something stupid and illegal and the world moves on.

          The only additional adjunct would be demanding him to step down as a councillor and trigger a by-election in his ward 6 months before the council elections.

          Is your witch hunt really worth demanding the cost of £25k for a by-election at this point?

          Reply
          • Luisa Hillard


            14.Dec.2016 5:14pm

            An election cannot be held within 6 months of one being due (May 2017). If Phil was to resign he would leave his residents without representation until that next election and by all accounts people seem to accept that he has at least been a very good Councillor.

        • Sally Perry


          14.Dec.2016 5:15pm

          Way off topic (again!) Island Monkey

          Reply
      • That’s about £205 a year. Many people don’t need to park every day. Often it’s for only a half hour or less.
        About £120 a year, say £10,month for an hours parking would likely be acceptable, and bring in income from casual parkers.

        Reply
  7. Just paid a whole £1 to park for an hour at Appley, and will be using the parking ticket to save a tenner(ish) at the Hare & Hounds somewhen this week (as is written on the back of it).
    I don’t like paying those fees as much as the next person, but it saves us money overall, so mustn’t grumble!

    Reply
  8. Why do people complain about car parking? It costs money to provide and maintain them, and surely that cost should be borne by the motorist who uses the car park rather than council tax payers.

    Reply
  9. All Island Car Park Permit is £295 per annum. £24.58 per month.That is a ridiculous amount to pay for parking just to visit a run down town and tatty coastal towns. Make the parking cheaper for residents and the council may see more people visiting places and spend some money.

    Reply
  10. temperance


    26.Jan.2017 9:18pm

    Argh another whingy parent you wanted them you pay for them. Walk to the beach or park it would do you both good, or would you like me to pay for a taxi or pram as well as paying for their schools child care, health service and all the other expenses you get child benefit for, which i also have to give to you. Makes me sick self centred society.

    Reply

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