Free parking for Christmas shoppers

First published in Local

CHRISTMAS shoppers will be able to park for free in Wyre Forest in the run up to the festive season and New Year.

All Wyre Forest District Council car parks will be free after 4.00pm, while some car parks will also be free to park all day on Saturdays and Tuesdays, from next month.

They include Bromsgrove Street, Kidderminster, Dog Lane, Bewdley and the car park at the rear of the Civic Centre, Stourport.

Free parking will run from November 17, when the Christmas lights are switched on in Kidderminster, until January 13, next year.

Conservative councillor Marcus Hart, the district council’s cabinet member for environmental services, said the scheme would help town centres during the busiest shopping period of the year.

“Free parking in our towns was a consistent message during our State of the Area Debate held earlier this year,” he said.

“The Council wants to support our town centre traders by allowing free car parking in each of the towns on the busiest shopping day, a Saturday, but also to encourage people to come into the town on what might otherwise be a quieter day of the week, a Tuesday.

“We have selected a car park in each of the towns which offers the best access to each of the town centres.”

In another boost for retailers, the authority is also organising a series of events and entertainment in the district to coincide with the free car parking.

Independent councillor Helen Dyke, member champion for town centres said: “We want to make a real difference this year to the shopping experience we can offer in the three towns.

"We’ve got some exciting new Christmas lights for Kidderminster and by putting on events across the three towns coupled with free parking, we aim to make Wyre Forest the place of choice for people to come and do their Christmas and New Year shopping this year.”

Comments (17)

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8:10am Wed 3 Oct 12

jackie1953 says...

that is good news bring people to our towns instead of going to others .well done .
that is good news bring people to our towns instead of going to others .well done . jackie1953
  • Score: 0

9:43am Wed 3 Oct 12

Poppasmurf says...

Funny how expensive parking doesn't deter shoppers, according the Wyre Forest Council, but free parking attracts them. Totally illogical thinking from these idiots who run the council.
Funny how expensive parking doesn't deter shoppers, according the Wyre Forest Council, but free parking attracts them. Totally illogical thinking from these idiots who run the council. Poppasmurf
  • Score: 0

12:48pm Wed 3 Oct 12

Mrs C Wass says...

......free parking for Kidderminster.......
with the death of Kidderminster and still poor Town Management Development in place - what are shoppers in Kidderminster welcomed too, you have lost the old town with increasing empty units, lack of variety. The creation Weavers Wharf was not managed well, and unlike Solihull for example, it has not intertwinned and boosted the whole town! Weavers Wharf Car Park is that to be free?????

Some urgent action is needed, together with grant income to re-vitalize and connect the town. Perhaps the market needs to come back to Council Management, where the council can raise more public funds to re-invest in Kidderminster Town Centre!!!!
......free parking for Kidderminster....... with the death of Kidderminster and still poor Town Management Development in place - what are shoppers in Kidderminster welcomed too, you have lost the old town with increasing empty units, lack of variety. The creation Weavers Wharf was not managed well, and unlike Solihull for example, it has not intertwinned and boosted the whole town! Weavers Wharf Car Park is that to be free????? Some urgent action is needed, together with grant income to re-vitalize and connect the town. Perhaps the market needs to come back to Council Management, where the council can raise more public funds to re-invest in Kidderminster Town Centre!!!! Mrs C Wass
  • Score: 0

12:48pm Wed 3 Oct 12

Red Flag Dan says...

Good call.
Good call. Red Flag Dan
  • Score: 0

7:19pm Wed 3 Oct 12

stayingaliveuk says...

This is a move in the right direction and probably a small distraction for us all from the recent car park charge increases this week. The fact still remains that prices have been increased and we still need to get them back to where they were, even after the festive period is over.

Please sign this petition now, to get WFDC to revert their decision.

https://www.change.o
rg/en-GB/petitions/s
top-carpark-charge-i
ncrease-in-wyre-fore
st

Thank you!

Michael de Groot
@stayingaliveuk
This is a move in the right direction and probably a small distraction for us all from the recent car park charge increases this week. The fact still remains that prices have been increased and we still need to get them back to where they were, even after the festive period is over. Please sign this petition now, to get WFDC to revert their decision. https://www.change.o rg/en-GB/petitions/s top-carpark-charge-i ncrease-in-wyre-fore st Thank you! Michael de Groot @stayingaliveuk stayingaliveuk
  • Score: 0

10:03am Thu 4 Oct 12

stour67 says...

why is the civic free ,vale road would have been better or still both, since it's been a pay car park it's been empty all but a couple of cars.
why is the civic free ,vale road would have been better or still both, since it's been a pay car park it's been empty all but a couple of cars. stour67
  • Score: 0

10:08am Thu 4 Oct 12

Poppasmurf says...

Is the car park at our super duper brand new state of the art all singing all dancing money saving energy saving council offices going to be pay and display, or do councillors and council staff get free parking?
Is the car park at our super duper brand new state of the art all singing all dancing money saving energy saving council offices going to be pay and display, or do councillors and council staff get free parking? Poppasmurf
  • Score: 0

1:21am Fri 5 Oct 12

DOEPUBLIC says...

So only the small matter of celebrating Christmas everyday stands stops permanent free parking.
So only the small matter of celebrating Christmas everyday stands stops permanent free parking. DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 0

1:06pm Fri 5 Oct 12

FranOb says...

Yesterday I had to go to Worcester in the evening to a event at TheGuildhall, Worcester City Council charges til 9pm and it cost me£3.90 for the privilege! The only plus was the ability to use mobile phone and debit card to park but Ifelt ripped off!
Yesterday I had to go to Worcester in the evening to a event at TheGuildhall, Worcester City Council charges til 9pm and it cost me£3.90 for the privilege! The only plus was the ability to use mobile phone and debit card to park but Ifelt ripped off! FranOb
  • Score: 0

1:20pm Fri 5 Oct 12

stayingaliveuk says...

@franob, just confirms to me that every council has got it wrong. Speaking to a local trader in Stourport yesterday, he confirmed that making it free after 4pm is a non-sense, as the town virtually shuts down at that time. And mothers are very unlikely to be coming into town after 4pm, when their kids come back from school around this time and they more than likely busy with other things at that time of the day. Fine during the holidays that would be OK. Begs the question why it wasn't decided to start this during the next half-term? So that just leaves Tuesdays and Saturdays and the downside of such a strategy is potentially forcing people towards these two days only. So could the towns be deserted on other days?
Great initiatives but slightly misguided in places.
Oh and the trader in Stourport confirmed that he had not been consulted by anyone on whether this was a good option or not.

Still time to sign my petition Fran!

Short code to Petition: http://styin.me/WtPD
lh

Michael de Groot
@stayingaliveuk
@franob, just confirms to me that every council has got it wrong. Speaking to a local trader in Stourport yesterday, he confirmed that making it free after 4pm is a non-sense, as the town virtually shuts down at that time. And mothers are very unlikely to be coming into town after 4pm, when their kids come back from school around this time and they more than likely busy with other things at that time of the day. Fine during the holidays that would be OK. Begs the question why it wasn't decided to start this during the next half-term? So that just leaves Tuesdays and Saturdays and the downside of such a strategy is potentially forcing people towards these two days only. So could the towns be deserted on other days? Great initiatives but slightly misguided in places. Oh and the trader in Stourport confirmed that he had not been consulted by anyone on whether this was a good option or not. Still time to sign my petition Fran! Short code to Petition: http://styin.me/WtPD lh Michael de Groot @stayingaliveuk stayingaliveuk
  • Score: 0

11:45pm Fri 5 Oct 12

DOEPUBLIC says...

Could have been worse FranO you may have needed to visit someone @ the hospital. Your carpark cost would have been? If you have a car. By bus it would cost? And by taxi?
If you feel cheated how do you think effects people on a lower income ?
All those unable to work or shopping during the day will be charged and those working will park free in the evening. Fair?
Could have been worse FranO you may have needed to visit someone @ the hospital. Your carpark cost would have been? If you have a car. By bus it would cost? And by taxi? If you feel cheated how do you think effects people on a lower income ? All those unable to work or shopping during the day will be charged and those working will park free in the evening. Fair? DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 0

8:40am Sat 6 Oct 12

stayingaliveuk says...

@doepublic you've made an excellent point. The same trader in Stourport told me a story about a couple that didn't drive who came to visit Stourport for the weekend. They wanted to see hartlebury castle and asked when the next bus was? The trader who happens to hold the bus table, looked it up and said, well how long are you staying because the next bus is on Thursday! The moral of this story is that not only are drivers penalised, non-drivers don't even stand a chance to help local traders and the so-called regeneration of town centres. How's that big wad of funding John Campion, earning nice interest in Iceland??
@doepublic you've made an excellent point. The same trader in Stourport told me a story about a couple that didn't drive who came to visit Stourport for the weekend. They wanted to see hartlebury castle and asked when the next bus was? The trader who happens to hold the bus table, looked it up and said, well how long are you staying because the next bus is on Thursday! The moral of this story is that not only are drivers penalised, non-drivers don't even stand a chance to help local traders and the so-called regeneration of town centres. How's that big wad of funding John Campion, earning nice interest in Iceland?? stayingaliveuk
  • Score: 0

11:57am Mon 8 Oct 12

HowardM says...

One of the big problems in the whole of Wyre Forest is a lack of joined up thinking, parochialism between the three towns, and no proper, long term plan for integrating roads, transport, infrastucture, industrial development, homes and retail development. The whole thing is a package, not a number of small, piecemeal initiatives that solve nothing. The Local Strategic Partnership, set up in about 2003 is a complete waste of time and really doesn't have a clue. (in my opinion - before they are start feeling got at) - nothing achieved of any real significance in 10 years!
Making parking free for a few weeks at Christmas (whilst I support it as a limited option) will only offer short tems gain whilst it lasts. How do you quantify the effect? Its Christmas so more people will shop in the town, with or without free parking! So footfall goes up say 25% - is that because parkings free or because its Christmas? Whats achieved?
In any major regeneration programme (and I've been involved in several - Birmingham Heartlands, Stoke Jubillee Park and others) you start with an overall plan - then you get the infrastructure right, plan the option for employment, create the jobs and the consequences create retail demand from the wealth generated! If people are out of work, short of money and watching how they spend, they won't shop just because they might save a couple of quid parking! And thats if they drive - what help do they get if they dont?
This area need a reality check about where it is going, and quickly, because nothing that is currently planned does anything to address the real issues of inward investment by employers and to provide a transport and road structure that makes the area more accessible to those investors. Successful retail only comes from the local wealth generated by other sectors. Retail alone does not create local wealth since most of the shops in this area are national chains who take the money out of the local economy! Time for a major rethink?
One of the big problems in the whole of Wyre Forest is a lack of joined up thinking, parochialism between the three towns, and no proper, long term plan for integrating roads, transport, infrastucture, industrial development, homes and retail development. The whole thing is a package, not a number of small, piecemeal initiatives that solve nothing. The Local Strategic Partnership, set up in about 2003 is a complete waste of time and really doesn't have a clue. (in my opinion - before they are start feeling got at) - nothing achieved of any real significance in 10 years! Making parking free for a few weeks at Christmas (whilst I support it as a limited option) will only offer short tems gain whilst it lasts. How do you quantify the effect? Its Christmas so more people will shop in the town, with or without free parking! So footfall goes up say 25% - is that because parkings free or because its Christmas? Whats achieved? In any major regeneration programme (and I've been involved in several - Birmingham Heartlands, Stoke Jubillee Park and others) you start with an overall plan - then you get the infrastructure right, plan the option for employment, create the jobs and the consequences create retail demand from the wealth generated! If people are out of work, short of money and watching how they spend, they won't shop just because they might save a couple of quid parking! And thats if they drive - what help do they get if they dont? This area need a reality check about where it is going, and quickly, because nothing that is currently planned does anything to address the real issues of inward investment by employers and to provide a transport and road structure that makes the area more accessible to those investors. Successful retail only comes from the local wealth generated by other sectors. Retail alone does not create local wealth since most of the shops in this area are national chains who take the money out of the local economy! Time for a major rethink? HowardM
  • Score: 0

7:05pm Mon 8 Oct 12

stayingaliveuk says...

@HowardM well articulated comment. What's happened to the regeneration plans, have they been finalised? Who is deciding on the priorities? After a brief involvement with the public, do we get left out now of the ongoing process? It's actually quite worrying that we're in this state, the fact that the decision was taken on increasing charges shows that, as you say, there is no joined up thinking at Wyre Forest.

Are you able to get regeneration raised as a debate in the council?

I can see bits and pieces of announcement going on, but can't see evidence of an overall plan, unless I have missed it?

It's my first time in my life that I am getting involved what's going on locally and I have to say, it's not a great experience so far. No wonder lots of people don't bother and get disheartened about what's going on and end up just moaning instead of saying something.

Thansk for your comments Howard on all the articles in connection with the car parking fiasco, much appreciated.

Michael de Groot
@stayingaliveuk
@HowardM well articulated comment. What's happened to the regeneration plans, have they been finalised? Who is deciding on the priorities? After a brief involvement with the public, do we get left out now of the ongoing process? It's actually quite worrying that we're in this state, the fact that the decision was taken on increasing charges shows that, as you say, there is no joined up thinking at Wyre Forest. Are you able to get regeneration raised as a debate in the council? I can see bits and pieces of announcement going on, but can't see evidence of an overall plan, unless I have missed it? It's my first time in my life that I am getting involved what's going on locally and I have to say, it's not a great experience so far. No wonder lots of people don't bother and get disheartened about what's going on and end up just moaning instead of saying something. Thansk for your comments Howard on all the articles in connection with the car parking fiasco, much appreciated. Michael de Groot @stayingaliveuk stayingaliveuk
  • Score: 0

12:00am Tue 9 Oct 12

DOEPUBLIC says...

Does this mean that pre-local election State of the area exercises were a charade HowardM?
Does this mean that pre-local election State of the area exercises were a charade HowardM? DOEPUBLIC
  • Score: 0

11:54am Wed 10 Oct 12

HowardM says...

Regeneration is an issue that is too big for WFDC to address alone - it needs Regional and National backing to stand any chance of success. The SoADebate was a commendable initiative by WFDC to start a process that brought forward £1m from WFDC for investment in local initiatives - I support that action. But we need to plan bigger and lobby wider to achieve even small benefits for WF This requires our current our MP, or any successor, to give a firm commitment that the local economy is a number one priority and lead a campaign to get Government at all levels to recognise the issues we have locally - it needs to engage senior managers in local business who can help, with local government, to get an incremental plan for the next (say) 10 years of infrastructure improvements and business development and investment. Too much stops because the arguement is used, it cant be funded. I am a firm believer in deciding what you want to do and why you want to do it, without initially worrying about how it will be funded - it is the vision for the area. Then , when you have that in place you seek to deliver it. Shoot for the sun ! We may not get there but we may reach the moon - and that is better than what is currently on offer!
Regeneration is an issue that is too big for WFDC to address alone - it needs Regional and National backing to stand any chance of success. The SoADebate was a commendable initiative by WFDC to start a process that brought forward £1m from WFDC for investment in local initiatives - I support that action. But we need to plan bigger and lobby wider to achieve even small benefits for WF This requires our current our MP, or any successor, to give a firm commitment that the local economy is a number one priority and lead a campaign to get Government at all levels to recognise the issues we have locally - it needs to engage senior managers in local business who can help, with local government, to get an incremental plan for the next (say) 10 years of infrastructure improvements and business development and investment. Too much stops because the arguement is used, it cant be funded. I am a firm believer in deciding what you want to do and why you want to do it, without initially worrying about how it will be funded - it is the vision for the area. Then , when you have that in place you seek to deliver it. Shoot for the sun ! We may not get there but we may reach the moon - and that is better than what is currently on offer! HowardM
  • Score: 0

4:50pm Wed 10 Oct 12

stayingaliveuk says...

Right then Howard, when shall we get started?
Right then Howard, when shall we get started? stayingaliveuk
  • Score: 0

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