Councillor's car park campaign
PUBLISHED: 09:00 27 July 2015
Clevedon Town Council should 'take back control' of car parks, according to one of its members.
Councillor David Shopland believes North Somerset Council could disappear ‘in about 15 years’ and become part of a Greater Bristol area.
To try to combat this, he wants the town council to regain control of its car parks as a way of protecting them and giving the council greater power.
Cllr Shopland, who is a member of North Somerset and Clevedon town councils, said: “It is highly probable North Somerset Council will disappear and we will become part of a Greater Bristol authority in about 15 years.
“I feel we should consider the town takes back and controls its assets from North Somerset Council.
“This town should be more actively involved in its car parks.
“We are living in changing times and it would appear that the aim of major politicians from all parties is to remove the right of individuals to play any meaningful part in the democratic process.
“With devolution and the creation of new political entities, this trend can only be increased and I feel it is time councils like Clevedon take steps to protect its heritage and former assets.”
Cllr Shopland says regaining control of car parks, including the Hawthorns and Salthouse Fields, would be part of a ‘broader picture’ for the town council to eventually have responsibility over areas including the seafront plus parks and open spaces.
He continued: “I would like us to return to the day when local highways and planning decisions were decided by the town council.
“I feel starting with the car parks is one way to achieve this end.”
However, as the Times reported earlier this month, North Somerset Council says it has ‘no plans’ to give up the running of Clevedon’s Salthouse Fields car park after the town council enquired about the possibility of taking over responsibility.
A spokesman for the district council said: “Salthouse Fields forms an important part of our car parking strategy across the district.”