Row over Welwyn Garden City parking solved – for now

THE battle over car parking charges at a WGC sports park has been won for now – but the war is far from over.

Welwyn Hatfield Council will NOT proceed with plans to spend �60,000 on installing pay and display ticket machines at the car park of King George V Playing Fields, off Beehive Lane.

The decision was made by cabinet members during a meeting last Tuesday.

Instead, further work will be carried out into whether or not charges need to be introduced to the car park.


Residents and councillors living in the area are almost unanimous in their opposition to the proposals, and

the scheme has already been voted down by members of the council’s social overview and scrutiny committee, led by Labour councillor and Hollybush ward resident Lynn Chesterman.

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Cllr Chesterman joined fellow residents in the public gallery during the meeting at Campus West, and again questioned the democracy of putting decision making powers in the hands of unelected cabinet members, as previously reported by the Welwyn Hatfield Times.

“Normally one has to prove the need for a scheme and then provide the funding,” she said.

“I’ve never known a situation, except in local government, where the money is provided first, then you go out and try and prove the need.”

But when Cllr Chesterman asked if the scheme would now be scrapped, council leader John Dean offered no such reassurances.

“I don’t want you to go away thinking this has been shelved,” cllr Dean said.

“I’m going to ask the council to consider future plans for KGV car park.

“Committees don’t make decisions, they make recommendations. It’s for the cabinet to make decisions.”

Cllr Dean also hit out at Cllr Chesterman’s earlier comments in the Welwyn Hatfield Times, saying the Conservative council had been voted in with a huge majority.

Cllr Chesterman replied: “I’m sorry you’ve made it political John, but thank you.”