Town centre welcomes free parking bays

Published Thursday, 20th November 2014
car park
Forge Island car park signage

The town centre has received an early Christmas present in the form of 220 new car parking spaces.

Following the relocation of Tesco, the Council has been able arrange for extra town centre car parking on the former site of the supermarket, Forge Island.

The extra spaces, 70 of which will be free for an hour, with the remainder being charged at an affordable £1 for two hours, £2 for four hours and £3 for all day parking, are available to use now.

Cabinet Member for Business Growth and Regeneration, Cllr Dominic Beck, said: “It’s great news that we've been able to secure these extra parking spaces for the town centre which will undoubtedly boost trade at that end of town.

"The pay-and-display machines have been installed and although it's great that the cost of both short and long stay parking has been kept to a minimum, it’s the fact that that we've been able to provide spaces which will allow visitors to shop for an hour free-of-charge that’s the real story.

"This is the first time we've had bays like this in the town centre and hopefully it will be a massive boost to Rotherham’s independent retailers.

"I've no doubt that it will encourage those shoppers wanting to quickly run into the town centre for an individual item, or just visit a couple of shops, to use Rotherham rather than other shopping destinations.

"The car park will also be offering the free weekend parking offer up to and including December 27.

"It’s just one more reason to ‘Shop Local’ this Christmas and discover the wonderful wealth of independent shops that Rotherham has to offer."

Dawn Topliss, owner of the Craft Corner and Bears Den in Riverside Precinct, added: "It's fantastic news that the town centre has these extra car parking spaces and even better that people can park for free for an hour.

"With Tesco leaving the site, it should keep people flowing to this side of town and all the great businesses here.

"This, plus the free weekend parking and the events which are taking place in the run-up to Christmas are a real indication of the enhancement of the Rotherham town Centre shopping experience."

To help visitors, members of the Council’s Parking Service team will be on site for the first few weeks to help people with the new arrangements.

Additionally, more good news for the town centre, Wellgate car park is getting ready to welcome a 'pay-on-exit' system, which will go into effect in January.

The new system will allow shoppers to spend as long as they want in the town centre without having to worry about the meter running out.