Parking meters for Budleigh Salterton?

While fears have been raised Budleigh Salterton could be in line for parking meters, county councillor Christine Channon said trade would not be affected because the first 30 minutes would be free. Town and ward members have called for seafront meters to deter nuisance drivers.

Months after parking meters were introduced at Seaton, fears have been raised Budleigh could face the same fate.

While it is likely any proposal would go before the public before any decision was made, it is thought parking meters could have a positive effect if they were installed along the seafront.

Town and district councillors believe charging seafront visitors to park along the Marine Parade stretch could deter campervan owners from using the area as an ad-hoc campsite.

County councillor Christine Channon said charges were being implemented across East Devon to fund council-run parking wardens.

She said Budleigh could face future parking charges, but not before any proposal had been run past the town.

Cllr Channon said trade was unlikely to be affected if High Street meters were introduced because the first half an hour to park would be free.

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She said: “At the end of the day it’s something that will go for consultation.

“The town would be consulted on what people think about it.”

Ward member Steve Hall said charging shoppers to park in the High Street was a backward move against boosting the local economy, but called for seafront meters to deter nuisance parkers.

Councillor Hall said: “If they were along the seafront it wouldn’t affect trade and it would resolve the problem of overnight campervans. The people along there are visitors, not residents of the town.”

Town mayor councillor Tom Wright said: “We are lucky in Budleigh Salterton to the point that we are unique. We have the only seafront in East Devon to have free parking.

“It’s inevitable in these financially sustainable times that people will be looking to make an income from parking charges.

“I would support charging for seafront parking because it would go some way to deter campervans.

“However I would also be opposed to charging for any parking in the High Street as there’s no doubt it would have a detrimental effect on our trade people and would also impact on local residents.”

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