Over 1,000 sign petition in response to new parking charges at Hartlepool Marina

A petition is asking for support to make Hartlepool Marina car park more “friendly and manageable” after a sudden price hike at the start of June.

Monday, 27th June 2022, 4:37 pm
Updated Monday, 27th June 2022, 4:38 pm

More than 1,300 people have signed a petition launched on behalf of Hartlepool Licensing Association in less than a week.

Business owners at the Marina have described people turning away and less customers visiting the area after parking charges at Navigation Point were increased earlier this month.

The car park has also been made cashless and the free period has been reduced to 15 minutes, causing concerns for deliveries and accessibility.

Hartlepool Licencees Association chairman Darab Rezai has said both the daytime and nigh time economy has been affected.

Meanwhile, 24-hour charges have been increased from £6 to £8.

In a statement earlier in June, Northwest Parking Management, which runs the car park, said the cashless machines were installed following complaints concerning the reliability of ticket machines and that a new entrance sign advises drivers of the changes.

It added the 30 minutes free period could have been reduced to “0 minutes free” to comply with the British Parking Association’s Code of Practice.

A petition, which was started by Emily Rosewood, on behalf of Hartlepool Licensing Association, is now asking people to sign to get support in making the car park “more friendly and manageable for the benefit of everyone in the town”.

Charges at the car park before the increase in June.

Darab Rezai, the chairman of Hartlepool Licensees Association, has said both the daytime and night time economy have been affected.

He also added the reduced 15-minute free period is not giving enough time to deliver goods or drop people off.

"People basically have boycotted Hartlepool Marina,” he said.

"Hartlepool Marina is supposed to be the jewel of the crown and is one of the places that everybody should be proud of, coming and enjoying the environment. This is not happening at all.”

Adam Gaines, who owns Rosie's pub, on Hartlepool Marina

"Everybody I talk to, they want to know how to get on that petition,” Mr Rezai added.

Speaking of the petition, he continued: “It would give an indication to all the councillors and the officers how much the general public and people who care about the town want it to be sorted.”

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Following the changes at the car park, Marina businesses expressed concerns for their livelihoods, as well as for deliveries and accessibility to certain motorists.

Adam Gaines, who runs Rosie’s pub, has said the impact of the new charges has already been felt.

He said: "We’re taking half of what we would normally on sunny days. I see people just turning away. Especially during the week, it’s quieter than it normally is.

"What I’ve noticed as well is that taxis aren’t pulling on to the Marina, they’re just dropping people on the top, so it’s difficult for people to get to where they want to go.

"Staff are getting fines as well.”

Businesses made a plea to the council to intervene back in 2019 following a previous rise in prices.