Free Car Parking To Be Reduced In High St

Rochford District Council has made a to install a rapid electric vehicle charging point in the High St. This application will however mean the removal of TWO free car parking spaces outside of Natwest Bank.

I welcome the introduction of EV charging points but feel this location is unnecessary. Why couldn’t this charging point be installed in the public car park? We don’t need to restrict access to the High St for shoppers and people who need to park for a short time for free.

There are multiple objections one being Rayleigh Town Council and it will be interesting to see if this simply falls on deaf ears

Rayleigh Town Council – The Rayleigh Town Council has planning
permission to use the pavement at the application site to be used as weekly high street market and events. The Council objects on grounds of loss of public car parking in the High Street detrimental to the local economy, DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE – 4 June 2019 Item 6
6.3 businesses and market traders and on the grounds of highway safety, traffic generation and impact on the Conservation Area.

ECC Historic Buildings and Conservation Advice – There is no objection to
the principle of installing this feature in a Conservation Area. However, the siting proposed is a prominent position in the centre of the Conservation Area.
Considering the location and size of the feature I consider this proposal will cause harm to the character and appearance of the Conservation Area. This harm is considered to be ‘less than substantial’ to a designated heritage asset and therefore paragraph 196 of the NPPF is relevant.

I recommend other, more sympathetic, locations are explored.

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About the author 

James Newport

Essex County Councillor for Rayleigh North, Rochford District Councillor for Downhall & Rawreth and Rayleigh Town Councillor for Sweyne.

  • I feel it would be far more suitable for the EV charging point to be in the most obvious location – the main car park, and for more of the parking spaces on the High Street to be for disabled parking. Surely those who are disabled are more in need of parking close to the shops.

  • i assume that if no electric car wants to re-charge normal vehicles will not be permitted to park in the space. if that is the case i agree it is an unnecessary and detrimental reduction in free parking. i may be a cynic but i cannot help feeling many officers dislike the very concept of free parking in town centres (not just our present officers but many officers past and present). we need electric charge points and we also need free parking in town centres (not either or).

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