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Threat to South Craven's free car parks
Free car parks – including several in South Craven – could be made pay and display following a review by Craven District Council.
Parish and town councils could also take over responsibility for their car parks as well as come up with alternative uses for the sites.
The district council, which two years ago tried and failed to introduce charges at several of its free car parks following opposition from ward councillors and the county council, is reviewing the future management of its car parking provision.
It is asking all town and parish councils to consult with residents and come back with their views.
Coun John Roberts, chairman of Craven District Council’s overview and scrutiny committee, said he wanted to make sure the consultation was as open and transparent as possible.
“We’re asking for the views of parish councils and not only those in wards with car parks, because people from other areas also use the car parks,” he said.
Councils are being asked to consult residents on whether charging would be a good idea and what the local demand was for spaces. They are also being asked to consult on the level of charging and whether alternative uses could be an option.
Coun Roberts said the overnight parking of HGVs in council car parks and coach parking should also be taken into account.
There was also the issue of some places being tourist destinations with a greater requirement for visitor parking.
“We need to be fair to the ratepayers of Craven. There is the insurance and overheads of these car parks to be taken into account and that has to be paid for by the council,” he said.
The council has 27 free and paid-for car parks.
Motorists currently park for free at sites in villages including Cononley, Cross Hills and Farnhill.