Council rakes in £1m in Mid Sussex car parking charges

Car park charges, Cyprus Road, Burgess Hill. Pic Steve Robards SUS-151002-102533001
Car park charges, Cyprus Road, Burgess Hill. Pic Steve Robards SUS-151002-102533001

More than £1 million was collected in parking charges in Haywards Heath and Burgess Hill last year.

A Freedom of Information request by the Middy found that Mid Sussex District Council raked in £418,498.21 from Burgess Hill car parks in 2014.

And in Haywards Heath the council took in a whopping £701,841.38.

The huge sum of money taken in for the whole district is spent on the management, maintenance, repairs and renewal costs for all car parks.

Councillor Gary Marsh, Cabinet member for Economic Development and Property explained: “Compared with neighbouring Councils, Mid Sussex has some of the lowest parking charges in Sussex and parking is free in many of our rural car parks, and in towns on Sunday,

“Car parks are expensive to maintain and, without parking charges, Mid Sussex taxpayers would be left with the bill. Our current system is a fair one because only those motorists who actually use the car parks are asked to contribute to their upkeep by purchasing a ticket.”

Car parks in Haywards Heath and Burgess Hill typically cost 80p for one hour to between £4-£6 for four hours and beyond.

“The income we receive contributes to the ongoing maintenance of all 32 car parks in Mid Sussex, including the many free car parks around the District. Resurfacing work, ticket machine maintenance, permits, parking tickets, signage, electricity and back office administration, are just some of the costs associated with ensuring our car parks run smoothly,” councillor Marsh added.

In Burgess Hill, the busiest month of the year saw drivers spend £45,114.17, and in the quietest £38,697.50.

In Haywards Heath’s busiest month people parking up spent £64,217.04, with the least busy month taking in £48,743.96, more than Burgess Hill’s busiest.

From April-December this year, Mid Sussex District Council’s Budget Management Progress Report forecasts that ‘car parking income is above target by £124,000 in the first nine months’ operation of the service’.

“Across the district there is a 4% increase in usage in Pay and Display parking when compared with the same period in 2013,” the report states.

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