Knowle 'free and display' parking changes set for re-think - The Solihull Observer

Knowle 'free and display' parking changes set for re-think

Solihull Editorial 25th Jul, 2018   0

SOLIHULL council is set to re-think charges in Knowle car parks after they were given the green light last month – following protests.

But councillor Alan Rebeiro has now resigned from the Conservative group in opposition to the latest plans.

The transport and highways cabinet member Ted Richards approved plans on June 14 to scrap the two-hour ‘free and display’ option in Knowle and increase parking charges across the borough typically by 20p.

The council expected to make an extra £316,000 a year from these plans, which are due to be enforced from September.

However, just six weeks later, changes to the plans are set to be approved at a meeting tonight (Thursday).

A document released ahead of the meeting written by Paul Tovey and Carl Newman, council officers from the transport and highways department, recommends to approve a 30-minute free and display period in Knowle, then increasing charges for each band relating to length of stay.

The report claims there has been a re-think after ‘the council received a number of representations objecting to the approved plan and requesting the decision be reconsidered’.

Objections to the proposals included the impact on parents dropping and collecting children from school and a call to provide one-hour free and display to support local retailer’s short stay shopping trips.

Other options to be considered at the meeting include proceeding with the original scheme as decided on June 14 – which would have introduced a 20p charge for the first hour and 40p for two hours; or to retain a free hour period and introduce a 40p charge for the second hour while increasing charges for the other tariff bands by 20p.

The report states: “By retaining a 30 minute free period option C addresses the concerns raised by parents around dropping off and picking up children at nearby schools, hence avoiding displacement whilst also addressing the need to support local traders.”

Coun Alan Rebeiro.


Coun Rebeiro stepped down from the group on July 10.

He will continue to represent Knowle as an Independent councillor until his seat is up for re-election next year.

He said he has been contacted by the Knowle Village Hall Association which had raised concerns over scrapping the two hours free and display and charging motorists, and the effect it could have on attendance to events which are fundraising to refurbish the hall.

Coun Rebeiro said: “I have made the strongest of representation to the Council to reconsider the decision taken on June 14 to remove free car parking in Knowle Village car parks following which my proposal for a compromise to secure at least one hour free parking and raise projected income has been considered by transport and highways officers.

“It was also accepted that consultation take place with the Knowle Society and local trader representatives.

“My proposal has the support of the Knowle Society and local trader representatives and also from anxious residents contacting me and welcoming my stance.

“I have also been contacted by the Knowle Village Hall Association with real concerns on the loss of two hours free parking impacting attendance at events which are vital to raising funds to refurbish the Village Hall.

“However, it became increasingly evident that I was too conflicted between the representation I am making for the community, for which I have strong local support, and the pressure of collective responsibility on Conservative Group policy.

“I therefore resigned from the Conservative Group on the July 10 as a matter of principle and will continue to represent Knowle Ward as an Independent Councillor until my term of office expires in May 2019.

“The final decision taken by the Council on the July 26 will reflect just how much the views and representations of local residents have been respected.

“I will continue to act responsibly and proactively for Knowle residents and the local business community and you have opportunity to have your say now and at the May 2019 Local Elections.

“You can contact me by email – [email protected] / [email protected]

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