Time limits on free car parks to be introduced in town
- Credit: Matthew Usher
Time limits on some car parks in Swaffham town centre are being introduced as part of a trial aimed at making more spaces available and boosting the economy.
From the end of July, drivers will be limited to parking for a maximum of two hours in Market Place, Pedders and Pit Lane car parks.
The Breckland Council-owned car parks will remain free to use, but drivers will be required to display a ticket in their car and people who exceed the two-hour limit will be liable to pay a fixed penalty notice.
The district council agreed to introduce the enforced time limits on a trial basis after being approached by the town council.
It is hoped that introducing maximum stays will make parking spaces more readily available and encourage more people into the town, providing a boost to shops, cafes, and other businesses.
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It will also make parking in the town more consistent, as on-street parking in the nearby area already has time limit restrictions. Breckland Council's Theatre Street car park and other existing parking facilities in the town will be unchanged by the trial, meaning longer-stay parking will remain available.
Work to install ticket machines in the participating car parks is now under way.
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They will remain open throughout this work, though a small number of spaces may be unavailable to ensure public safety.
Drivers are urged to check on-site signage from the end of the month to confirm the new parking rules and start dates.
Paul Hewett, Breckland's executive member for contracts and assets, said: "This will be good news for local businesses and just one of the ways we are supporting our market towns to thrive as part of our Market Towns Initiative. The new approach will be introduced on a six-month trial basis and we will be assessing the impact after that."
Breckland Council has also agreed to introduce a similar trial at its Queens Square car park in Attleborough. The six-month trial there will begin later this year, once county council-led improvement works to the car park are completed.