Traders back Berwick quayside parking but conservation group opposes plan
Berwick Chamber of Trade has formally supported plans for extra parking provision on the quayside.
Northumberland County Council wants to extend the existing car park onto a disused area of rough grass, creating more than 30 long-stay parking spaces.
The proposal has divided local opinion, including Berwick Town Council.
However, Chamber of Trade chairman Stephen Scott, in a letter of support, states: ‘Over a number of years there has been a gradual reduction in the number of car parking spaces in and around the town centre. This results in there being significant parking problems during busy times and consequently a resulting detrimental economic impact too when visitors are unable to park.
‘The build of the new Premier Inn hotel was approved with no provision for extra parking. When this 60 bedroom hotel opens at the end of 2019, this will place further significant pressure on the availability of parking in the vicinity. This proposal, if approved, will go some way to ease the pressure, though it will not eliminate it.’
In contrast, Berwick Conservation Area Advisory Group (CAAG) has objected,
CAAG chairman Margaret Shaw said: ‘Additional car parking would further detract from the magnificent town walls – a significant tourist attraction.
‘Access to the proposed car park will inevitably bring more cars through the town centre.’
Elaine Paterson, a member of the Neighbourhood Plan sub-committee, added: ‘The quayside parking proposal sets a bad precedent for yet more town centre parking that cumulatively damages the historic townscape.’