AFTER a few years of the failed expensive barrier system at Pugneys, the council has decided that parking should be “pay and display” at 30p per hour.
No consultation has been given on this but at the time of the barrier installation it was agreed to give one hour free - this enabled walkers, many elderly or parents with children and those recovering from operations to take their daily walk without the added expense of car parking.
There will no longer be an hour free, but I understand that those attending meetings or participating in water sports will get a refund. This is grossly unfair as walkers and casual visitors will usually be Wakefield residents but those others may well be from further afield. Why should there be differentiation between users?
The pay and display machines were installed several weeks ago and all I can say on this is whoever decided on the positioning of the machines was totally clueless of the place - one machine is as far away as possible from the bulk of the car parking and the other is positioned in such a way that you either have to paddle through a very large puddle or alternatively gingerly walk over the muddy slippery grass! I hope the council are adequately insured.
l Lisa Dodd, Wakefield Council’s service director responsible for sport, said: “We do understand this is difficult for people who were used to free parking at Pugneys but the council’s financial position means we have had to make some tough choices.
“We have listened to public views and set the charges to reflect how people use the park and its facilities, including charging just 30p for the first hour. People booking facilities are given a parking refund. We would not expect them to pay twice, as this would drive away custom and make the council’s financial position even worse.
“The pay and display machines have been installed at locations closest to electrical supplies to reduce costs. We are aware of the puddle by one of the machines and we will remedy this as soon as possible.”