Councillors launch campaign against parking charges at Patchway station

Posted on Friday 9th April 2010 at 7:27 am by SH (Editor)

Patchway Station Campaigners

Stoke Gifford campaigners have launched a campaign against the introduction of parking charges at Patchway station.

The station’s owners – First Great Western – have notified South Gloucestershire Council that they plan to remove the free parking currently available and introduce £3 a day charging in September.

The decision comes months after First Great Western dramatically increased parking charges at nearby Parkway station.

Councillors and campaigners now fear that the introduction of charges will reduce demand for catching the train from Patchway, which in turn will make further service improvements unlikely.

There are also concerns that those commuters determined to catch the train from Patchway will escape paying the charges by parking in nearby residential roads.

Conservative councillors for Stoke Gifford, Justin Howells and Keith Cranney, said:

“We are opposing what First Great Western is planning.”

“Their removal of free parking will discourage commuters’ use of Patchway station because when faced with having to fork out for both parking and the train ticket, many people will simply decide to drive straight to their destination, particularly if it is in the Bristol area.”

“Whopping parking charges will also encourage remaining commuters to park in nearby residential streets so they can escape paying, which will impact on local residents who already have concerns about parking.”

Brian Hewitt, Chairman of the Friends of Patchway station, added:

“This has taken us completely by surprise.”

“We have repeatedly asked First Great Western to provide more services from Patchway and make using the station and catching the train more attractive.”

“I cannot see how the introduction of parking charges helps to meet these goals. If anything, it would be a setback and cause many more problems.”

Photo (L to R): Cllrs Brian Allinson, Justin Howells, Jackie Lewis, Keith Cranney, local campaigner Jack Lopresti and Friends of Patchway station chairman, Brian Hewitt.

Source: Conservative Group on South Gloucestershire Council

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