New parking permits for guests and residents


- Credit: Archant

A pair of new parking permits designed to save disabled residents from trekking across town and to boost the guesthouse trade has been given the green light.

East Devon District Council [EDDC] cabinet members met on Wednesday to agree to recommendations for a new town centre disabled residents’ permit for £520 per year, as well as a permit for visitors using guesthouses.

It would save users of the 46 parking spaces in the Mill Street car park the 330 per cent price hike that the cabinet approved last year.

The disabled parking permit would allow qualified users to park on a long stay basis in short stay car parks as an alternative to using the Manor Road facility.

EDDC officer Andrew Ennis said: “These car parks will all remain public, pay and display car parks and spaces will not be reserved for residents.”

Cabinet also approved guest permits, which would allow Sidmouth businesses to offer their patrons a weekly permit that can be used throughout East Devon.

Mr Ennis said: “We may lose income from visitors who are given a permit at the start of their holiday but those permits are going to be cheap.

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“The additional benefit is clearly the possibility of an improved offer from our local bed and breakfast and holiday let businesses attracting more customers and contributing to the local economy.”

An established guest permit scheme currently runs for Exmouth and Beer guest houses and they are valid for six months.

EDDC councillor and Sidmouth ward member Peter Sullivan said: “This is an active tourism area. The permit will be good for the small businesses.

“I think it will be good for the whole district.”

Councillor Frances Newth added: “Visitors with the parking permit can go and park throughout East Devon.

“I think it is an excellent idea.”

The officers’ recommendations also said the impact of the proposals may cause concern for the chamber of commerce over the vitality of the town centre and ‘blocked’ parking spaces as EDDC tries to strike a balance.