CARDIGAN motorists are staging a revolt against local authority-run public car parks, town councillors have reported.

They say residential streets on the outskirts of town are becoming ‘over-run’ with parked vehicles whose drivers are unable or unwilling to use fee-paying car parks.

It appears that rising ticket prices coupled with machines deemed ‘confusing’ to operate have led to a growing number of motorists parking outside the town centre.

Councillor Nick Bolton said that Park Place and Aberystwyth Road were some of the worst roads affected and a surplus of parked vehicles was causing problems for people who lived there.

“These roads are always full of cars and we all know why,” he said. “They belong to people who leave their vehicles there and walk into town because they cannot or will not use Ceredigion County Council’s fee-paying car parks.

“Parking charges have gone up so there’s nothing to encourage drivers to use county council car parks.”

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Mr Bolton said he doubted whether the local authority had sufficient funds to facilitate a permit-only scheme operating in parts of Pembrokeshire.

The issue had been praised by Councillor Trystan Phillips who reported that residents of North Road had complained of vehicles parking on both sides of the street.

Town mayor Sian Maehrlein suggested the town council could take over the former health centre car park in Pendre or the upper Mwldan car park and make them permit-only.  “There are never any cars up in the Mwldan,” she added.

“I totally see where people are coming from,” said Councillor Olwen Davies. “Has the county council’s opinion on residents’ parking changed at all? Other counties have such  schemes.”

Councillor Catrin Miles replied that nothing had come from a pilot scheme trialled in Aberystwyth, pointing out that Edinburgh City Council had clamped down hard on pavement parking.

Councillor Richard Davies said he had recently watched three motorists walk away from a card-only machine at Greenfield Square because they only had coins.

“Parking as a whole in Cardigan is a massive problem,” he acknowledged. “We have to look closely at this and try and sort it out over the next two or three months.

“If we cannot get people into town a lot of businesses will have closed by next winter.” He suggested Cardigan would be the ideal place to trial a parking permit scheme.

Councillor Philippa Noble observed that a number of motorists were unable to operate the town’s parking machines whether they took a card or cash.

“In order to be inclusive these machines should be card and cash,” she added. “The level of service we are getting is just ridiculous.”

Councillor Clive Davies maintained Cardigan’s footfall had actually increased due to the recent positive publicity the town had received.