Views sought on plans to ease congestion and problem parking in Cirencester town centre

Cars parked on the single yellow line in Castle Street run the risk of being given a ticket

Cars parked on the single yellow line in Castle Street run the risk of being given a ticket

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AFTER misreporting new parking plans two weeks ago, the Standard is happy to now set the record straight.

Problem parking on one of the most frequently used roads in Cirencester town centre could be relieved as part of new plans to ease parking in town.

The Cirencester Parking Partnership (CPP), which is made up of officials from the county, district and town councils and the Cirencester Chamber of Commerce, has put forward plans to replace Castle Street’s single yellow line with a pay and display parking bay.

It is hoped that the machines will make parking in the notoriously busy street more accessible and convenient.

Cllr Geoffrey Adams, a member of CPP, told the Standard that the proposals have been designed with shoppers in mind.

“People park in Castle Street and are then constantly worried about being given a ticket by a traffic warden for not returning to their car in time. These pay and display machines will give shoppers the amount of time they want for the money they pay in,” he said.

Following a previous story that ran in the Standard, a spokesman for Gloucestershire County Council confirmed that free parking in Dyer Street will not be affected.

The Standard visited Castle Street earlier this week to discover what local businesses made of the proposals.

Sophie Berry, manager of the Nail Salon, said the new machines would benefit customers who want to enjoy a treatment.

She said: “The people who come to us are usually here for more than four or five minutes so it would help them. I think it would also help people who struggle to find a parking space nearby.”

Maxine Duncan, who runs the Aga Shop, explained that she had lost business because of people having to rush back to their cars.

“People are only willing to be away from their cars for five minutes, that attitude cost me a £10,000 sale the other day. In that respect, I think it would be good for our customers,” she said.

While Bec Minett, of clothing store White Stuff, admitted it would be good for Castle Street, she raised concerns about how practical it would be for lorries that have to park on the road to make deliveries.

Commenting on this, Cllr Adams said: “I don’t know the full details, but I would imagine that, before 10am, the lorries would be able to park outside and make their deliveries as they do now.”

Under the proposals, pay and display machines would also be placed in residential streets to encourage motorists to make the most of the town’s car parks.

Cllr Vernon Smith, GCC cabinet member for highways and flood, said: “This is a significant partnership review, which residents have asked for and which aims to find a way of giving them more choice while freeing up other streets and reducing congestion across Cirencester.”

The consultation period runs until Friday, March 28. To view the plans, visit www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/parking and click on parking consultations.

Comments (13)

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4:26pm Thu 20 Mar 14

Geoff66 says...

Rather than creating a new "Cash-Cow" why oh why won't the Partnership look careful at the existing parking pricing structure, and look at how it can encourage more people and visitors to come to Cirencester and utilise our shops and facilities?

Cirencester is struggling and you only have to walk round the town to see that footfall is down, yet alone speak to local businesses who will gladly tell you that they are struggling.

We need to look at ways we can encourage more people to come to our town, and CDC's current parking structure seems to be anti-car user, or is that just "let's fleece car users"

Instead of charging £1.30 for an hour why don't we drop this to say £1.00. or even lower? and why oh why are we charging people to use the Brewery car park on a Sunday, when all of the town's other car parks are FREE...this is an outrage, and makes no sense!

Time for a re-think and it is not just about finding new Cash-Cows or putting up parking charges, yet alone charging residents to be able to park on their own street, with more Resident only parking schemes.

It is time for a major re-think on Cirencester and what we need to do, to secure the long term future, viability and sustainability of this town. Failure to act now, will after all have a significant and negative impact upon the town
Rather than creating a new "Cash-Cow" why oh why won't the Partnership look careful at the existing parking pricing structure, and look at how it can encourage more people and visitors to come to Cirencester and utilise our shops and facilities? Cirencester is struggling and you only have to walk round the town to see that footfall is down, yet alone speak to local businesses who will gladly tell you that they are struggling. We need to look at ways we can encourage more people to come to our town, and CDC's current parking structure seems to be anti-car user, or is that just "let's fleece car users" Instead of charging £1.30 for an hour why don't we drop this to say £1.00. or even lower? and why oh why are we charging people to use the Brewery car park on a Sunday, when all of the town's other car parks are FREE...this is an outrage, and makes no sense! Time for a re-think and it is not just about finding new Cash-Cows or putting up parking charges, yet alone charging residents to be able to park on their own street, with more Resident only parking schemes. It is time for a major re-think on Cirencester and what we need to do, to secure the long term future, viability and sustainability of this town. Failure to act now, will after all have a significant and negative impact upon the town Geoff66
  • Score: 11

5:31pm Thu 20 Mar 14

Rex Cooper says...

This was an attempt to recover from a badly written and factually incorrect on parking a couple of weeks ago. Yet the journalist is prepared to report a claim by a shopkeeper that they lost a £10000 sale because of a reluctance to park a car ! Does anyone really believe this ? It will be difficult to reconcile the different needs and conflicts on parking in Cirencester and you can bet your life that the Standard will, as it usually does to complex issues, add more heat than light.
This was an attempt to recover from a badly written and factually incorrect on parking a couple of weeks ago. Yet the journalist is prepared to report a claim by a shopkeeper that they lost a £10000 sale because of a reluctance to park a car ! Does anyone really believe this ? It will be difficult to reconcile the different needs and conflicts on parking in Cirencester and you can bet your life that the Standard will, as it usually does to complex issues, add more heat than light. Rex Cooper
  • Score: 4

7:11pm Thu 20 Mar 14

Olly Cromwell says...

Tell us about all the meters coming to Castle Street

Tell us about all the meters coming to Tetbury Road

Tell us about the 45% filled CDC car parks (due to a flawed pricing policy)

Tell us about the deals involving the former THWhite site and the multi-storey car park plans

Tell us about the unelected self-appointed quango which is CPP

Give us some proper journalism....
Tell us about all the meters coming to Castle Street Tell us about all the meters coming to Tetbury Road Tell us about the 45% filled CDC car parks (due to a flawed pricing policy) Tell us about the deals involving the former THWhite site and the multi-storey car park plans Tell us about the unelected self-appointed quango which is CPP Give us some proper journalism.... Olly Cromwell
  • Score: 11

7:05am Fri 21 Mar 14

Crispin Mount says...

The Tories are determined to turn Cirencester into a suburb of Notting Hill; with car parking charges to match.
The Tories are determined to turn Cirencester into a suburb of Notting Hill; with car parking charges to match. Crispin Mount
  • Score: 7

4:04pm Fri 21 Mar 14

Shop Owner says...

Use the income raised from the parking meters to reduce the charges in the other main car parks.
The Beeches Car Park is now pretty much full each day because of the £2.00 all day tariff. CDC needs to look at prices across all the car parks to encourage more usage as a matter of urgency.
If the tariff is set at the right level people will use the car parks.
Car Parks should be viewed as a service to local residents and visitors and not just a way of raising revenue. I have no objection to charging to use car parks, however the charge must be reasonable to encourage usage and not act a s a deterrent.
Use the income raised from the parking meters to reduce the charges in the other main car parks. The Beeches Car Park is now pretty much full each day because of the £2.00 all day tariff. CDC needs to look at prices across all the car parks to encourage more usage as a matter of urgency. If the tariff is set at the right level people will use the car parks. Car Parks should be viewed as a service to local residents and visitors and not just a way of raising revenue. I have no objection to charging to use car parks, however the charge must be reasonable to encourage usage and not act a s a deterrent. Shop Owner
  • Score: 7

4:06pm Fri 21 Mar 14

salhilliker@tiscali.co.uk says...

Let's have a report from the residents who want some of the new proposals but just want residents only parking on their streets and no meters and why didn't the cirencester parking partnership look at all the existing permit parking streets in this consultation? Funny that Cecily hill residents get relief when the other streets are forgotten but councillor Adams does live there!
Let's have a report from the residents who want some of the new proposals but just want residents only parking on their streets and no meters and why didn't the cirencester parking partnership look at all the existing permit parking streets in this consultation? Funny that Cecily hill residents get relief when the other streets are forgotten but councillor Adams does live there! salhilliker@tiscali.co.uk
  • Score: 4

7:12pm Fri 21 Mar 14

cirencabbie says...

Well said, salhilliker! CPP seem a worthless quango; Glos council don't reply to emails re just how many permits they are prepared to sell vs spaces available (I've sorted that via a Freedom of Infomation request) and APCOA have shoddy systems and delinquent staff resulting in tickets being issued to residents who DO have a permit. Add to that the opportunist UKIP who leaflet cars with warnings of charges simply because the Libs have taken the positive angle of trying to get car park prices reduced.
Everyone seems to have a view but nobody apart from the Ashcroft Parking Group is adopting joined up thinking. For example, what about the impact on traffic flows, and by association parking, of the Market Place and Brewery Cinema developments? Is it really sensible to have shoppers battling for on-street parking amidst the increased traffic that will be using Ashcroft Road/Gardens?
CPP/CDC/GCC or whoever need to stop thinking purely of parking revenues and start to consider the impact on revenue received by the retail sector that pays them business rates, residents who pay them council tax and the safety of those using the streets.
Well said, salhilliker! CPP seem a worthless quango; Glos council don't reply to emails re just how many permits they are prepared to sell vs spaces available (I've sorted that via a Freedom of Infomation request) and APCOA have shoddy systems and delinquent staff resulting in tickets being issued to residents who DO have a permit. Add to that the opportunist UKIP who leaflet cars with warnings of charges simply because the Libs have taken the positive angle of trying to get car park prices reduced. Everyone seems to have a view but nobody apart from the Ashcroft Parking Group is adopting joined up thinking. For example, what about the impact on traffic flows, and by association parking, of the Market Place and Brewery Cinema developments? Is it really sensible to have shoppers battling for on-street parking amidst the increased traffic that will be using Ashcroft Road/Gardens? CPP/CDC/GCC or whoever need to stop thinking purely of parking revenues and start to consider the impact on revenue received by the retail sector that pays them business rates, residents who pay them council tax and the safety of those using the streets. cirencabbie
  • Score: 3

9:54pm Fri 21 Mar 14

Olly Cromwell says...

Wise up folks !

Out of 27 elected reps for Cirencester the Tories hold 2 positions. They are loathed.

However, they rule at Cotswold District Council and are in a cosy minority rule at Gloucestershire County Council.

They intend to bleed Cirencester for off-street car parking (CDC) and now on-street car parking (GCC)

Only a revolution is good enough for these idiots to smell the coffee...
Wise up folks ! Out of 27 elected reps for Cirencester the Tories hold 2 positions. They are loathed. However, they rule at Cotswold District Council and are in a cosy minority rule at Gloucestershire County Council. They intend to bleed Cirencester for off-street car parking (CDC) and now on-street car parking (GCC) Only a revolution is good enough for these idiots to smell the coffee... Olly Cromwell
  • Score: 5

11:21am Mon 24 Mar 14

Iansky says...

Cirencester parking charges are one of the primary reasons for poor trade, again on Sat my wife had at least 4 customers who said they would come back another time as their parking was due up and they were not willing to pay more to extend it.

We are killing this town through extortionate charges!

As for street parking, I live on Cecily Hill and despite the comments about us being untouched, we are not - we still have non residents taking up resident slots especially at weekends and the wardens are very rarely in evidence.

Those responsivble for parking have sold many more permits than there are spaces available (surely this is fraud) and to top it all, we have non residents parking commercial vehicles on the street (CB Slade) and holding resident permits for both the Old Railway station and Cecily Hill - I have heard from a neighbour who challenged them that they got the permit through "soemone they know"

Surely Resident permits should as the name implies be for residents and since the old parking authority have been replaced, things have only got worse - add to that the greed of soem in wanting more ways to grow the herd of cash cows at the expense of the town and we are fast heading for total meltdown.
Cirencester parking charges are one of the primary reasons for poor trade, again on Sat my wife had at least 4 customers who said they would come back another time as their parking was due up and they were not willing to pay more to extend it. We are killing this town through extortionate charges! As for street parking, I live on Cecily Hill and despite the comments about us being untouched, we are not - we still have non residents taking up resident slots especially at weekends and the wardens are very rarely in evidence. Those responsivble for parking have sold many more permits than there are spaces available (surely this is fraud) and to top it all, we have non residents parking commercial vehicles on the street (CB Slade) and holding resident permits for both the Old Railway station and Cecily Hill - I have heard from a neighbour who challenged them that they got the permit through "soemone they know" Surely Resident permits should as the name implies be for residents and since the old parking authority have been replaced, things have only got worse - add to that the greed of soem in wanting more ways to grow the herd of cash cows at the expense of the town and we are fast heading for total meltdown. Iansky
  • Score: 3

2:52pm Mon 24 Mar 14

Rex Cooper says...

Parking charges are applied all over this country to pay for council services -the income compensates for not putting up council tax bills which councils are reluctant to do otherwise they might not get re elected. Electors seem to prefer it this way.
To Lansky - 1. In Cirencester, trade is not "poor " compared with other towns it is doing well. 2. Shoppers do not generally abandon an intended purchase because their parking is running out. If 4 of them gave that as a reason then they were not telling the truth or they were stupid. 3. If I lived in Cecily Hill I would keep quiet about my preferential parking arrangements
Parking charges are applied all over this country to pay for council services -the income compensates for not putting up council tax bills which councils are reluctant to do otherwise they might not get re elected. Electors seem to prefer it this way. To Lansky - 1. In Cirencester, trade is not "poor " compared with other towns it is doing well. 2. Shoppers do not generally abandon an intended purchase because their parking is running out. If 4 of them gave that as a reason then they were not telling the truth or they were stupid. 3. If I lived in Cecily Hill I would keep quiet about my preferential parking arrangements Rex Cooper
  • Score: -5

10:31am Tue 25 Mar 14

Iansky says...

Rex Cooper wrote:
Parking charges are applied all over this country to pay for council services -the income compensates for not putting up council tax bills which councils are reluctant to do otherwise they might not get re elected. Electors seem to prefer it this way. To Lansky - 1. In Cirencester, trade is not "poor " compared with other towns it is doing well. 2. Shoppers do not generally abandon an intended purchase because their parking is running out. If 4 of them gave that as a reason then they were not telling the truth or they were stupid. 3. If I lived in Cecily Hill I would keep quiet about my preferential parking arrangements
Rex,

If you are saying trade for small businesses in Cirencester is doing well then you are not talking to the business owners!
My wife runs a small business in the town and her trade has fallen by almost 60% in the past couple of years, some of it due to the recession but much is due to increased parking charges that deter shoppers from browsing (this she is told by the shoppers who pop in but cannot stay to browse).

There are also a number of small businesses that have closed and currently at least two others in the process of closing so in no way can that be classed as "doing well" - unfortunately (but not unexpected) those with the power to make changes are the ones furthest removed and with the least interest in actually talking to small business owners!

I also find your comment about "preferential parking arrangements" arrogant, I rent the property I live in and have done so for 8+yrs, to park on the hill we have to purchase residents permits at an annual cost to us, the permit was promoted by the council (Cirencester controlled it initially) as a way to guarantee residents a place to park - alas, through greed, the controlling agency (now in Gloucester) saw fit to sell more permits than there are spaces(which I still maintain is fraud) and while I think it fair to allow residents from Thomas/Park/Black Jack street to park there, they are honour bound to ensure ther are sufficient spaces to accommodate all "residents".

We have as I stated previously, commercial vehicles (CB Slade) who already hold a permit for the Old Station Car Park now having a resident permit for Cecily Hill that they apparently sourced through "someone they know" in the office and are not local residents qualifying for a permit in the same way we must - it make me wonder how many others are holding permits aquired through the "old boy network" - to top it all, policing of cars parking in resident slots has dramatically reduced since the new company took over so I feel my gripes are justified! Often when I return home from work in the evening there are no slots and I am forced to park elsewhere and when carrying heavy equipment that is not right so in no way preferential!!!!
[quote][p][bold]Rex Cooper[/bold] wrote: Parking charges are applied all over this country to pay for council services -the income compensates for not putting up council tax bills which councils are reluctant to do otherwise they might not get re elected. Electors seem to prefer it this way. To Lansky - 1. In Cirencester, trade is not "poor " compared with other towns it is doing well. 2. Shoppers do not generally abandon an intended purchase because their parking is running out. If 4 of them gave that as a reason then they were not telling the truth or they were stupid. 3. If I lived in Cecily Hill I would keep quiet about my preferential parking arrangements[/p][/quote]Rex, If you are saying trade for small businesses in Cirencester is doing well then you are not talking to the business owners! My wife runs a small business in the town and her trade has fallen by almost 60% in the past couple of years, some of it due to the recession but much is due to increased parking charges that deter shoppers from browsing (this she is told by the shoppers who pop in but cannot stay to browse). There are also a number of small businesses that have closed and currently at least two others in the process of closing so in no way can that be classed as "doing well" - unfortunately (but not unexpected) those with the power to make changes are the ones furthest removed and with the least interest in actually talking to small business owners! I also find your comment about "preferential parking arrangements" arrogant, I rent the property I live in and have done so for 8+yrs, to park on the hill we have to purchase residents permits at an annual cost to us, the permit was promoted by the council (Cirencester controlled it initially) as a way to guarantee residents a place to park - alas, through greed, the controlling agency (now in Gloucester) saw fit to sell more permits than there are spaces(which I still maintain is fraud) and while I think it fair to allow residents from Thomas/Park/Black Jack street to park there, they are honour bound to ensure ther are sufficient spaces to accommodate all "residents". We have as I stated previously, commercial vehicles (CB Slade) who already hold a permit for the Old Station Car Park now having a resident permit for Cecily Hill that they apparently sourced through "someone they know" in the office and are not local residents qualifying for a permit in the same way we must - it make me wonder how many others are holding permits aquired through the "old boy network" - to top it all, policing of cars parking in resident slots has dramatically reduced since the new company took over so I feel my gripes are justified! Often when I return home from work in the evening there are no slots and I am forced to park elsewhere and when carrying heavy equipment that is not right so in no way preferential!!!! Iansky
  • Score: 3

1:04pm Tue 25 Mar 14

Geoff66 says...

Surely parking in Cirencester is going to get worse, once the new Cinema development starts, and if and when the council looks to sell the Memorial Hospital and Old Bus Station sites, most likely for housing, where housing numbers will be high and parking allowances will be low.

New metered streets is not the option, and the Parking Partnership needs to have a major and radical rethink about its parking policies and parking charges, to encourage greater numbers of visitors and shoppers to use our town and its shops and facilities, which at the same time, won't have a major impact upon on-street parking, or on residential streets.

Time for a radical rethink..... and time to involve local residents and local businesses in a practical way forward
Surely parking in Cirencester is going to get worse, once the new Cinema development starts, and if and when the council looks to sell the Memorial Hospital and Old Bus Station sites, most likely for housing, where housing numbers will be high and parking allowances will be low. New metered streets is not the option, and the Parking Partnership needs to have a major and radical rethink about its parking policies and parking charges, to encourage greater numbers of visitors and shoppers to use our town and its shops and facilities, which at the same time, won't have a major impact upon on-street parking, or on residential streets. Time for a radical rethink..... and time to involve local residents and local businesses in a practical way forward Geoff66
  • Score: 3

10:25am Sat 29 Mar 14

Localbusy says...

Re: charges in the Brewery on Sundays
Another puzzler is....why does it cost 50p to park there for 30 mins during the week, but there is a minimum charge (£1.50, I think) on Sunday? How is that helping trade?
Re: charges in the Brewery on Sundays Another puzzler is....why does it cost 50p to park there for 30 mins during the week, but there is a minimum charge (£1.50, I think) on Sunday? How is that helping trade? Localbusy
  • Score: 0

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