Parking charges will be re-introduced in district council car parks across South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse from Monday 8 June.
South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils have allowed people to park for free since 26 March to support key workers and those who need to shop for essential food or medical supplies during the Coronavirus pandemic after travel restrictions were put in place.
However with many restrictions now lifted, and following the government’s announcement that outdoor markets and car showrooms can re-open on 1 June and non-essential retail on 15 June, the councils will now re-introduce parking fees in order to improve the availability of parking spaces as people start to visit local shops again. This will also help to encourage people to consider using more sustainable travel methods when visiting our town centres.
Car parks will operate as normal, meaning that motorists must display a ticket or have a valid online or text payment confirmation, including during any free hours offered in the charging period. Normal rates will apply. New permits will be issued or re-issued to anyone whose permit would’ve normally expired since lockdown began.
NHS staff and care workers who display a national COVID-19 pass can continue to park for free. To claim a pass, staff should email firstname.lastname@example.org, including proof of their employment.
Cllr Jenny Hannaby, Cabinet Member for Housing and Environment at Vale of White Horse District Council, said: “I’m sure many people will have appreciated being able to park for free during the recent weeks. However, with restrictions being reduced and shops soon be able to open again, we must now ensure that we have sufficient spaces available for people who wish to visit our local shops.”
Cllr David Rouane, Cabinet Member for Housing and Environment at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “To support NHS staff and care workers we will continue to offer them free parking when displaying a COVID-19 pass. This is just a small gesture of thanks for the vital work they have carried out, and continue to carry out, during the pandemic.”
For more information about district council car parks please visit southoxon.gov.uk/parking or whitehorsedc.gov.uk/parking.
Councils say that the coronavirus could end up costing £100 million