PARKING charges in a number of key west Cornwall car parks are to be cut for a trial three months in the run up to Christmas, Cornwall Council have announced.
Cheaper parking in selected sites in both Penzance and St Ives for the next few months will not only benefit Christmas trading but also support local workers, said the authority.
Penzance’s large 201 space St Erbyn’s car park – between Penalverne Drive and Clarence Street - is popular with workers parking during the day.
Parking there will drop to £1.90 per day from Friday December 6 for approximately three months.
In St Ives local businesses and shoppers are more likely to benefit from the cuts.
There all long stay car parks are to be priced at £2 per day, and all short stay car parks will charge £2 for three hours from Monday December 16.
Other towns where trials will take place include Bude, Launceston and Liskeard.
At the end of the various trials Cornwall Council will assess the impact of each one to determine if they would be financially viable to continue, said the authority.
Councillor Bert Biscoe, Cornwall Council’s portfolio holder for transport, said: “Christmas and New Year are very important festivals and also peak trading times – therefore the Council’s parking service is doing this experiment to see if we can help boost events and trade.”
Parking policy group leader Kate Dixon said: “Councillors and the local community have also suggested trials that support local workers and boost trade throughout quiet times.”
“We also have a number of other suggestions in the pipeline that we are currently analysing with the view to implementation in the forthcoming months.”
The extensive reductions in St Ives came about after discussions between the St Ives in December traders’ campaign organisers at the Chamber of Trade, and new Cornwall Councillor Tim Andrewes.
Paul Ford from St Ives in December said: “We initially asked for free parking for the Christmas period which we were never going to get but these reductions are great news.
“And because the cuts extend beyond the Christmas period we will be looking at other commercial opportunities to take advantage of those in January, February and March.”