A Letter from Nantwich

March 2010 (2)                                                                        Update

Set car park charges the same

THERE was something pleasing about reading in the local press that Crewe councillors were complaining about their town not being treated the same as other places in the recently set-up Cheshire East Council area.

   Ever since 1974 when Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council was formed by an amalgamation of the Crewe authority and the two Nantwich councils - Urban and Rural - we Dabbers have been bemoaning the fact that the borough's income seemed to be benefiting the Crewe area more than the rest of the ratepayers.

   The fact that the borough councillors had to turn to the Civic Hall or St Mary's Parish Church, two large Nantwich buildings not equalled in Crewe, was a matter of pride but only seemed to make it worse that we were the poorer cousins.

   It was the inequality of the car parking facilities that was incensing the Crewe councillors.

 

NOT that we in Nantwich are leaving this matter to the Crewe people. As the website of Nantwich Town Council explains: "Town Councillors have begun a campaign to get fair car parking charges in Nantwich."

   It adds: "Most Councillors reluctantly accept the need for charges for parking but feel that the amount paid should be roughly the same in all the towns in the new Cheshire East Council."

   Nantwich is not doing too well according to figures issued by the Town Council. Car park charges are 70p for an hour, 1 for two hours, etc. Congleton are likely to have charges of 30p an hour, 50p for two hours, etc. And the Cheshire East authority is planning to have free parking in Alsager, Holmes Chapel, Middlewich and Sandbach, according to the Town Council website.

   It's not that we want equal prices for the townspeople, of course. I would have thought that the majority of local people would leave their car at home and walk into town. No, it's for the visitors to Nantwich.

   It is felt that people will go elsewhere to shop rather than pay higher charges in Nantwich for the same items in these times of nationwide shopping facilities - the supermarkets and the like.

  The Council also points to free parking on supermarket car parks but at one store, at least, shoppers thinking of sneaking into the town centre to make some additional purchases in town are likely to return to their car to find that it has attracted the attention of the store's car park attendant.    

 

ANOTHER issue that had been niggling some people is the 50p charge for (admittedly all day) parking in Nantwich. It has been dubbed "Pay to Pray" as it mainly affected people going to church. But that stopped mid March.

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