Parking fees could save play parks

PARKING fees could be reintroduced in Angus to counter the potential loss of some of the county’s playparks, Montrose community councillors have said.

At Thursday’s meeting, community councillors said they could not back the loss of any of the town’s playparks earmarked for removal by Angus Council and urged the authority to look elsewhere to make its budget cuts.

The suggestion was put forward by member Paul Fettig, who pointed out that Angus is the one of the few councils in Scotland which does not charge for parking in its car parks. Councillor Bill Duff said free parking is regarded as an advantage in promoting the burghs’ town centres but Mr Fettig’s point was backed by several community councillors including chairman Tommy Stewart.

Mr Duff said the idea would be unpopular with local retailers and while he acknowledged the move might be popular with parents, it was less likely to be backed by drivers who did not have children.

He said: “Could I sell that to Montrose shop keepers? Car parking charges are one of those things that could possibly be on the agenda. It’s a possibility, but while parents might approve I’m sure of what the shop keepers would say.

“Each Angus town is struggling, businesses are leaving High Streets and retailers would say that they’re having to compete against supermarkets that have free parking.”

Read the full story in next week’s Review.