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Pensioner parking permits removal challenged

A MOVE to axe parking permits for the over-65s in Stratford is set to be reviewed after opposition councillors on Stratford District Council called in the decision.

Ending the pensioner permits was part of a package of measures agreed by the cabinet last month, with the ruling Conservative group saying the financial position of the council meant difficult decisions were needed.

It was also argued that it was unfair to grant the over-65s a 97 per cent discount on parking with a permit, while others in the town had to pay the full charge. However, the opposition Liberal Democrat group argued that the move would be “a nail in the coffin for the vibrancy of the town centre”.

Earlier this month it was announced that the decision to abolish pensioner permits would be reviewed and a public consultation and a full report on the costs of the scheme would be undertaken before a new recommendation was made to the cabinet.

LibDem councillor Kate Rolfe said: “The decision to withdraw the concession was taken without considering the impact this would have on those with passes. It seems odd to look at such a change when our high street is struggling and needs all the customers we can get.”

The call-in of pensioner parking permits does not affect a number of other changes to parking agreed by the cabinet in January.

These include a general rise in off-street charges and increased fees for lorry and motorhome parking at Stratford Leisure Centre.

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