Charges will hit residents and park-users alike

SIR – Regarding your article ‘This will be a bitter pill to swallow’, I am astonished at the council’s decision to introduce parking charges at the KGV Playing Fields in WGC.

The availability of this free car park alleviates the issue of visitors to the QE2 Hospital parking in the surrounding side streets, however, I would add being a resident of one of those streets it does not eradicate the problem.

Spending �60,000 to install ticket machines will only compound the issue of parking in the side streets and blight the lives of the local residents.

This is a hospital that provides a 24/7 service, which means there will be no relief for local residents, even at the weekends.

The parking issue will be further compounded when local footballers park in the surrounding streets, at weekends, to avoid paying KGV charges.

The council has given no thought to the impact this will have on the usage of the KGV Playing Fields and its community facilities.

By introducing parking charges, local residents, and those from further afield, will now need to pay to walk their dogs, senior citizens wishing to play bowls will also need to pay; along with football, tennis and cricket players of all age groups.

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It’s suitably ironic that central government recognises there is a ticking health time bomb in this country and encourages us all to exercise more.

Even our local MP Grant Shapps has endorsed the resident King George Football Club, whereas our local council feels it is more appropriate to price its residents out of using a currently free, local sporting amenity, frequented by young and old, alike.

John Graves,