East Grinstead Society

Letter to the MSDC CEO on parking charges

Read the letter here

Dear Ms Hall,

I hope you are very much aware of the uproar that the proposed new parking charges and extension to paid parking hours has caused the citizens of East Grinstead.

The East Grinstead Society is a charity which aims to “Highlight issues affecting the ambience of the Town Conservation Area that negatively affect the quality of the Town’s heritage” and “Alert Town and District Councils where practical improvements are needed.”

The Society strongly believes that the out of balance increase in parking fees and the extension of fees to cover evenings, weekends and public holidays will negatively affect the viability of the Town and its community.

Many of the community activities, including those of the East Grinstead Society, take place in the evenings and are largely run by volunteers. Many churchgoers use free car parking on Sunday to attend services.

Shops rely on the parking status quo to maintain their viability.  Whilst a 10% increase (as suggested by the wide-ranging petition now circulating) would seem palatable, the extension of parking hours is not. This would cause immense difficulty for community groups, churchgoers and theatregoers. Many of these activities are already struggling to exist and the proposed extension would be devastating. The changes would also seriously impact the viability of shops and restaurants which are also struggling.

Accordingly, the East Grinstead Society would urge that these increased charges are limited to no more than 10%, maintaining the hours of operation as they are currently.

Yours sincerely

James Baldwin
Chair, East Grinstead Society