Proposed daily parking charge at West Northamptonshire country parks reduced as council makes amendments
and live on Freeview channel 276
Following a public consultation, West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) has made amendments to its proposed increase to parking charges at popular country parks.
When the council first set out its 2023/24 budget, the proposed all-day fee at either park was set at £12. This was £4.50 more than what an all-day ticket currently is at Brixworth and a staggering £9.80 more than the all-day ticket at Daventry.
At the time, Labour councillor Emma Roberts (Delapre and Rushmere ward) said: "This is simply a cash cow. It has no real justification and is just being used to pack the gaps in funding. The hike is huge. Another result of underfunding of councils from local Government.”
However, after criticism from residents, opposition from councillors and more than 3,000 responses to the public consultation, the council has now proposed the figure of £8 for an all-day ticket at either country park.
Originally, up to two hours at either park was set to be increased to £3, with up to four hours £4, up to six hours £6 and up to eight hours £8. A single park season ticket was set to be priced at £70 and a dual park season ticket £100, per year. However, parts of this price structure have now been rejigged.
Pricing at Brixworth and Daventry Country Parks after amendment:
Up to one hour: £2
Up to two hours: £3
Up to three hours: £4
Up to four hours: £5
Up to five hours: £6
Up to six hours: £7
Single park season ticket: £70
Dual park season ticket: £95
parkrun season ticket (8am - 10am on Saturdays for parkrun participants only): £5
Leader of WNC Councillor Jonathan Nunn said: “We know our proposals for parking charges have also raised concerns from residents and businesses – we have listened to these and worked hard to explore options and propose changes we think strike a fair balance towards addressing these within the tough financial constraints we have.
“We are confident our plans to review and harmonise car parking charges at our country parks will continue to attract visitors, and provide them with cost-effective outdoor activity.”
When the parking charge increases were originally announced, the council also proposed introducing a fee to park at the Racecourse, which is currently free. However, after public outcry, WNC announced on January 24 that it would not be pursuing plans to introduce parking charges to the Racecourse “after listening to the concerns raised by residents”.
Similarly, there have also been amendments made to the proposed car parking charges increase in the town centre. Two hours free on Saturdays and Sundays have been added, as well as other changes, which many are saying is not enough. Read more about the town centre charges here.
All of the proposed changes relating to country parks and town centre parking prices will need to be approved by WNC at its annual budget meeting on Wednesday, February 22.