Bognor town centre parking charges set to stay the same for at least one more year

MOTORISTS are set to enjoy another year of frozen charges in Bognor Regis town centre car parks.

The fees for stays in off-street sites such as Hothamton and Regis Centre are due to remain unchanged until at least April 2013.

The proposal is contained in Arun District Council’s latest budget which is starting to be debated by councillors before a final decision is made on February 21.

If the freeze is approved, it will make it two years in a row the charges have stayed the same.

Chamber of commerce chairman and president Nick Stuart-Nicolson said: “It’s really good news and will help to encourage people to come into the town.

“This will boost the town centre and, like most other towns, Bognor’s town centre needs all the help it can get. Car parking is the key to that.”

But he said the chamber remained committed to seeking more two-hour-free parking after its launch on December 1 in the Fitzleet multi-storey and Lyon Street car parks only. “We remain hopeful there will be an extension to this, particularly as it has been so well received,” he said.

Cllr Norman Dingemans, Arun’s council member in charge of economic regeneration, said: “People’s budgets are being squeezed at the moment and the proposed freeze is to help them.

“We are trying to keep costs down for motorists and we want people to come into the town centre. We do not need to increase the charges at the moment.

“Some people say we should put up the charges every year as a matter of course but we are not going to tax people on a principle, only on the need for the extra money.”

Current fees include 70p for one hour stays and £6.40 for more than four hours in the Regis Centre and Hothamton car parks and 50p for an hour and £1.50 for two hours-plus in the London Road car park.

The freeze also applies to longer stays in the Lyon Street and Fitzleet sites which are longer than two hours.