Last ditch attempt to stop car park price hike

The Exchange Street car park in Aylesbury
The Exchange Street car park in Aylesbury

A politician has launched a last-gasp bid to stop car parking fees increasing in Aylesbury town centre.

District councillor Mark Bateman is attempting to put a motion in at full council asking AVDC to reconsider the fees, which would see prices at the popular Exchange Street car park rising by up to 50%, while cheaper evening tariffs would also be scrapped.

AVDC councillor Mark Bateman

AVDC councillor Mark Bateman

They are due to come into force on September 1.

Mr Bateman said: “They will destroy footfall in the town centre. For local shops to thrive they need people in the town. We’re not getting people in our town in anywhere near the numbers of neighbouring places like High Wycombe. That’s down to a number of reasons but putting up car parking prices is certainly not going to make things any easier.”

Mr Bateman, who is a Labour member for Southcourt, also hit out at cabinet member Angela Macpherson, who said scrapping the evening tariffs was ‘to make the charging structure more straightforward’ as people find it ‘confusing purchasing a ticket as there are two different tariffs to work out’.

He said: “I was rather amazed at the quote from the member responsible for parking trying to suggest it was partially being done to stop confusion of local people which I thought was a bit of a cop out.

“If she’d have said it was because they need more money that would have been a more honest answer, but the answer she has given is rather condescending, that local people are confused.”

Under normal circumstances Mr Bateman would only need the support of one other councillor seconding his motion for it to be presented to council. However, as the decision has already been ratified by the council in February, he needs at least five other politicians to support him before it is debated.