Lake Grounds parking plea

PUBLISHED: 15:00 20 March 2013

Portishead Lake Grounds

Portishead Lake Grounds

Archant

MORE than 1,200 people have signed a petition asking North Somerset Council not to introduce parking charges at Portishead’s Lake Grounds.

Ward councillor David Pasley has confirmed that despite strong public opinion against the charges, a North Somerset Council working party set up to investigate the introduction of parking charges across the district, will recommend their implementation to the authority’s strategic planning and economic development panel at a meeting on April 9.

Mr Pasley, who is not a member of the working party, says he has stressed the importance of protecting the future of Portishead Open Air Pool and a caveat is expected to be introduced in an attempt to do this.

However, a pool spokesman, who will be presenting the petition at the North Somerset Council April meeting, said: “It’s not just about pool users, it’s about protecting the staff, the volunteers, the Lido Kitchen, which the pool trust relies on for rent, and general visitors to the area who come across the pool for the first time. A lot of people feel it is very important to keep free parking at the Lake Grounds.”

The petition can be found at http://signon.org/sign/no-car-parking-charges

The row over parking charges is just one of a raft of issues currently affecting the Lake Grounds.

The café and boat hire facilities at the seafront pay concession fees to North Somerset Council. In addition, Portishead residents pay a special expense in their council tax, which is for the privilege and upkeep of the Lake Grounds. They are now asking what this money is spent on.

From April 1, the authority will remove all funds for public toilets and the Lake Grounds conveniences will be included in a pay-to-use, self funding concession agreement.

The Rodmoor Gardens, which were once tended by the authority, are now managed by volunteer group Portishead in Bloom and a local resident litter picks daily to keep the area looking its best.

Residents feel the Lake Grounds is getting a rough deal and there are a number of separate campaigns under way calling for change.

Portishead Town Council has now asked for a breakdown of how the special expense collected from its residents is spent.


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