Following a decision taken by Full Council on 10 February, Herefordshire Council will apply an inflationary increase to its parking charges from April this year.

Residents and businesses will also be asked for their views about on street parking in roads that surround the historic centre of Hereford.

The new parking charges will take effect from Monday 3 April 2023 where a 20p per hour increase will be applied to all zone 1 and 2 car parks in the county. Charges at zone 3 car parks, however, will be frozen so that it becomes increasingly more cost effective for drivers that are able to, to park further away from our central areas.

The review of on street parking is in line with the Local Transport Plan (LTP), approved in 2016, which sets out the council’s strategic objectives for parking. This includes managing the supply and pricing of parking to encourage the use of active and sustainable travel choices, and supporting our long-term growth proposals in Hereford through the delivery of longer-term parking provision, such as Park and Choose, and to rationalise and reduce the supply of commuter parking in the centre of the city.

Cllr John Harrington, Cabinet Member Infrastructure and Transport, said: “We need to be proactive when setting our parking charges as we are faced with inflationary pressures on the costs of the parking services and those services which parking income is used to support, such as public transport. I am pleased that we are once again able to freeze the prices in our outer zone 3 car parks so that those that use them daily will not be affected by this small increase.”

“We understand that there will be some local concern that the introduction of parking charges to free parking areas will mean that the city centre footfall will reduce as a result, but in fact, better management of parking facilities leads to reduced congestion, improved air quality and road safety, promotes the local economy and ensures good accessibility.

“Professional surveys undertaken in the identified locations have recorded an average of 541 parking events between 30 minutes and 2 hours each day, excluding residents with permits. An estimated 40% displacement into off street parking or other travel means would see nearly 70,000 parking trips displaced from our city streets annually, improving space availability for businesses and residents, creating more turnover and helping our visitors.

“We are keen to hear the views of residents and businesses in the streets where these proposals will apply. Letters will be sent to affected properties, along with Ward Councillors and other stakeholders, in the coming weeks so they can get in touch directly as part of the process.”