Cut-price parking strategy to help drive up business



Exmouth motorists will soon be able to take advantage of six months of cut-price parking around the district in a bid to boost business.

Shoppers in Axminster, Honiton, Sidmouth and Exmouth are all set to benefit from deals aimed at encouraging longer visits to town centres and visitor attractions.

It is part of a trial which aims to find out what long-term parking offers the district council might be able to make, and follows a major report last year by Littleham district councillor and Exmouth champion Tim Wood.

His report ‘Vitality of high streets and town centres’, was welcomed by East Devon District Council’s (EDDC) overview and scrutiny committee and he listed a 13-point plan to breathe life back into the district’s high streets.

One of the suggestions was to reduce or cancel parking charging at particular times.

And EDDC hopes to boost local trade and keep high streets healthy whilst not reducing the parking income it receives.

For six months from Good Friday, March 29 people can look forward to charges halved to just 50p per hour up to a maximum of £3 for 6 - 24 hours at the Maer Road car park.

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And all car parks in Axminster and Honiton will have a ‘weekend special’ enabling motorists to park for just £1 from 3pm on any Saturday until 8am the following Monday.

The Sidmouth Ham car park is also included – motorists will be able to buy three hours’ parking, and get the fourth free.

Councillor Phil Twiss, EDDC’s deputy cabinet member for environment, said: “This is good news for residents and visitors which we hope will encourage more people to come and enjoy our towns, seafronts, shops and attractions over the busy summer months.

“We want to make sure people get a great deal from East Devon, and this trial will help us find out if we can afford to run these offers in the longer term and in more places. We do have to generate enough money from parking to keep services running and council tax frozen.

“Hopefully, these offers will be the best of both worlds: more people parking, lower costs for motorists and the same income to support local services.”