Former Dorchester Mayor brands reintroducing car parking charges as 'ridiculous'

Former Dorchester Mayor brands reintroducing car parking charges as 'ridiculous'

Published by Maria Greenwood at 8:58am 14th May 2020.

The decision to re-introduce charges for council-owned car parks from this Wednesday has been described as ‘ridiculous’ by former Dorchester mayor, David Taylor.

He has put the decision to keep public toilets closed in the same category and says it defies logic.

Cllr Taylor says the decisions, which he says councillors were not consulted on, does nothing to help struggling local businesses get back on their feet.

"The traders are on their knees, many have gone bust and a lot of the rest of the local population are earning very little money.

"I know you can argue car parking charges is only a relatively small amount, but to re-introduce them at this time is not helping anybody."

Charminster St Mary's David Taylor
Charminster St Mary's David Taylor

Cllr Taylor (Lib Dem) now represents the Charminster area. He added:

"Dorset Council has been given millions of pounds by the Government to help the local economy, the least they could do is continue free car parking, until things pick up."

Cllr Taylor says he was also unhappy about what he describes as the mixed messages from council leader, Spencer Flower, who on Tuesday evening appealed to people not to come to Dorset with the lifting of travel restrictions.

Cllr Spencer Flower said:

"Our overriding priority is the safety and wellbeing of Dorset residents. We want to discourage people from outside the county and from areas with a higher rate of infection than Dorset from visiting our beaches and beauty spots, and inadvertently spreading the virus to local people.

"We really look forward to welcome visitors back to our beautiful county in future, but it’s too early to take the risk right now."

Weymouth Melcombe Regis car park closed
Weymouth Melcombe Regis car park closed

In response Councillor Taylor said:

"I can understand what he is saying about not putting local people at risk, but to contradict what the Government is saying just leads to even more confusion.

"Mixed messages from our leaders at a time like this is the last thing we want.”

By Trevor Bevins, Local Democracy Reporter 


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