SW&T show leadership
We heard last week of South Somerset District Council’s woes. They tell us they have lost, or will lose, nearly £1m of revenue due to the COVID 19 outbreak.
Over at Somerset West & Taunton council they may have had losses, but they are looking to the survival of the town centres in their care. This applies to car parks in town centres such as Minehead, Wellington and of course Taunton. Drivers are warned this only applies to council owned car parks, so double check where you are parking.
It also does not extend to any on street parking, this is nearly always the preserve of Somerset County Council.
Nevertheless the move from SW&T is a determined effort to encourage the local economy to get back underway.
Cllr Mike Rigby, Executive Member for Planning and Transportation, explains “Free car parking for the foreseeable future will support the reopening of our high streets which is vital as we recover from this pandemic. We are doing all we can to support shoppers and business, planning changes to our pavements and roads to allow social distancing. Of course, it will mean an immediate hit to our income, but we are looking at the bigger picture and how we can have an impact on the economic and social recovery which is key to all our futures.”
The Leveller® notes the move and welcomes it. It is a rare thing indeed to see a council taking a genuinely strategic view!