Parking shake-up to boost market towns like Louth

East Lindsey's inland market towns could face a raft of changes to car parking fees in a radical shake-up being considered by the district council.

Louths Cattle Market car park will remain free all day.
Louths Cattle Market car park will remain free all day.

ELDC has produced a comprehensive review of the 55 off-street car parks it 
owns in 14 towns and villages.

The proposed changes will go before the council’s Executive Committee next month to be ratified.

The council says it wants to scrap it’s current ‘one size fits all’ policy and introduce policies which are tailor-made to individual communities.

The council adds it has listened to as many people as possible during the consultation period, but warns it cannot afford to lose the annual £1.7m net income it receives from car parking.

That income provides 10 per cent of ELDC’s revenue budget and councillors warn without it, services would have to be cut .

In Louth and Horncastle, the council is proposing to introduce 30 minutes free car parking in the respective market places.

As it stands, vehicle owners have to pay.

The council suggests that the free period will boost businesses - enabling people to ‘pop in’ to local shops without having to pay.

In Louth, all day free parking will be retained at the Cattle Market and Linden Walk.

Charges for long-term parking at other ELDC sites in Louth could be reduced with the review saying it would encourage people to ‘dwell longer’ in the district’s ‘busiest market town.’

In Horncastle, there are no major changes planned to current charges - apart from the Market Place.

Cars will still be able to park for free for the first two hours on The Wong (Cattle Market).

The situation varies wildly in other towns and villages.

For example, in Coningsby and Tattershall, all day free parking will be scrapped.

Instead, it could be replaced by a two-hour free limit - followed by a scale of charges.

Other proposed changes will see winter charges increased in coastal resorts like Skegness and Mablethorpe.

The review has also ruled out a pay-on-exit scheme being introduced. Evening parking charges will not be affected.