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Proposed Car Parking Charges FAQs

This page aims to answer the most frequently asked questions raised by residents and local business owners regarding the recently proposed car parking charges.


Please note that these proposals are due to be considered by the Environment and Regeneration Scrutiny Committee on 04 April and the information provided may be subject to alterations.


The below information is what currently stands in the Council's proposal. If agreed, the charges will not come in to effect until later in 2019.


Full details of the proposals are included in the Proposed Parking Management Cabinet Report.



  • Which areas will be affected by the proposed charges?

    The proposed charges are due to affect areas across the Vale including Barry Town Centre, Barry Island, Cold Knap Barry, Cowbridge, Southerndown, Ogmore, Penarth and Llantwit Major. Each of these areas will be considered as either a short stay, long stay, resort or coastal car park or as on street/town centre parking or as a country park. These will be subject to individual terms. These are the considerations as they currently stand:



    Kendrick Road, Thompson Street, Wyndham Street (All short stay).

    Court Road Multi-storey (Long stay).

    Harbour Road Main, Harbour Road Overflow, Nell’s Point (All resort).

    Cold Knap (Coastal).

    Porthkerry Park (Country Park).


    Penarth: Cliff Walk (Resort).

    The Esplanade (Coastal).

    Cosmeston Lake (Country Park).


    Cowbridge: The Butts, Town Hall Square, Southgate (All short stay).


    Southerndown & Ogmore: Cymlau, Brig-y-Don, Rivermouth (All resort).


    Llantwit Major: Cwm Col Huw (Resort).

  • What are the proposed parking charges? 

    Short stay: Up to 2 hours FREE, Up to 3 hours £1.00, Up to 4 hours £2.00, up to 5 hours £5.00 and all day £6.00. Tariffs applicable 6 days per week from 8:00am to 6:00pm with blue badge holders free. Annual permits available for £160 for 6 months and £300 for 12 months, with a direct debit option.


    Long stay: Charges for the Long Stay Car Park is proposed to be the same as short stay except that up to 5 hours is £4.00 not £5.00 and all day is £5.00 not £6.00. Tariffs applicable 6 days per week from 8:00am to 6:00pm with blue badge holders free. Annual permits available £80 for 6 months and £150 for 12 months.


    Resort: Resort car parks are not subject to any seasonal variation in tariff. Resort car park charges for cars are 0-1 hour £1.00, 1 hour plus £6.00 between 8:00am and 4:00pm. From 4.01pm to 11:00pm a reduced charge is applicable for 1 hour + of £3.00. These charges would be for 7 days per week. Permits will be available for each car park at an annual cost of £300. It is proposed that disabled persons with blue badges would park for free.


    Coastal: Summer charges for these car parks up to 1 hour £1.00 and all day £3.00 with a £12.00 charge for buses and coaches. Winter period November to February inclusive no charge. Tariffs applicable 8:00am to 8:00pm 7 days per week and a permit for individual car parks will be available for £75 per year. Disabled persons with blue badges proposed as free.


    Country Park: Charges proposed all year round with up to 2 hours parking for £1.00 and all day set at £3.00 with bus/coach parking at £10.00 all day. Tariffs applicable between 8:00am to 6:00pm 7 days per week. Permits available for £75 per car park per annum. Disabled persons with blue badges proposed as free.


    On Street Parking/Town Centre: Charges are proposed for on street parking in the coastal resorts of Penarth (the Esplanade) and Barry Island all year round, 7 days per week. Up to 2 hours £2.00, up to 3 hours the charge proposed is £4.00, up to 4 hours £6.00, up to 5 hours £8.00 and all day £10.00. These tariffs would apply between 8:00am - 11:00pm at Barry Island on street parking locations year-round and between 8:00am - 8:00pm at Penarth Esplanade. Charges in the Winter for Penarth Esplanade are proposed as half the Summer charge. Disabled persons with blue badges proposed as free. 

  • What if I use these car parks regularly? 

    Parking permits will be available to purchase for all car parks, which will allow you to use the car parks from as little as 50p per day. Permits are car park and vehicle specific, are non-transferable and have no monetary return value. They can be purchased outright or via direct debit. They will be cover either a 6 or 12 month period. A car parking permit will not guarantee you a parking space. There will be no permits available for on street car parking (such as Barry Island street parking and Penarth Esplanade).

  • What if I am a resident in these areas? 

    Charges will apply for resident parking permits for all existing and new resident parking schemes.


    Resident parking schemes are provided in streets where the majority of residents have no alternative but to park their vehicles on‐street. Resident parking schemes are intended to reserve a portion of the parking space exclusively for residents and their visitors where a street is subject to heavy parking by non‐residents such as shoppers, commuters or visitors to public facilities.


    The council provides resident parking schemes to assist residents and their visitors in being able to park reasonably close to their homes. Resident parking schemes will not guarantee you a parking space.

  • How do I purchase a resident permit? 

    Where an area is designated as a ‘resident parking area’ any persons residing at an address within the area will be eligible to apply for a resident permit for vehicles assigned to them at that address so long as the address is their primary residence. Resident permits must only be used for the vehicles that they were issued. Permits can be issued online or in person and only with recent proof of residence. Permits will cover a 12 month period.  


    The proposed fees for resident permits are as follows:

    1 - £10

    2 - An additional £20

    3 - An additional £30

    4 - An additional £40

    5 - Fees increase proportionately with permit/car numbers


    For example:

    A family with 3 cars/permits would pay £10+£20+£30 = £60 per annum.


    The proposed cost for a visitor permit will be £20. Only one visitor permit per dwelling per year is available. Visitor permit usage will be subject to terms and conditions.

  • What if I am disabled? 

    The proposed Parking Policy for financial year 2019/20 makes it clear that there are to be no parking charges for disabled persons who have a blue badge. There will be no fees or time restrictions for disabled persons correctly displaying blue badges.

  • How will the proposed charges affect local businesses and business owners? 

    A study undertaken by Consultants MRUK for Welsh Government suggest that the actual availability of car parking is more important to those looking to park than the costs of  parking. The quality of the attractions available is also suggested to be more important to visitors. On-street parking availability at Barry Island is in very short supply due in part to the poor turnover of spaces. Charges help to control demand as they increase turnover, so rather than one family parking their car on-street and going to the beach for a few hours, there could be multiple families in multiple vehicles. 

    It is our belief that many of the on-street parking spaces are currently taken up by traders and their staff, thus denying nearby parking opportunities for visitors or those who may wish to spend money in the shops on Barry Island. Staff and owners of business should be encouraged to park further away from the main amenities at Barry Island, if they must use their car, and this one of the reasons that a season ticket option for the car park has been developed.       

  • How will I pay for parking? 

    In terms of  infrastructure it is proposed to use 'Pay and Display' Machines. The machines will accept coins and take contactless payments but not bank notes, and will require inputting of part of the car number plate. Tickets will be required for all stays regardless of whether a charge is levied. 


  • How will the charges be enforced? 


    A report was presented to Cabinet on 18th February 2019 in respect of the provision of an in-house enforcement service which will relates to both environmental and Civil Parking Enforcement (CPE). The report includes proposals for the future of the Council’s Enforcement Service and recommends the creation of a centralised in-house enforcement team. A further report will be presented to Cabinet outlining the future intentions for the enforcement of the Parking Policy. 

  • Why are you introducing car park charging at a time when many businesses are struggling?


    The Council is struggling to continue to provide the frontline services that our residents need. Every year, the Council spends hundreds of thousands of pounds of tax payers’ money maintaining its assets. In recent years, this has increased at Barry Island due to its renewed popularity.


    Unfortunately, the National Government funding position for local government over recent years has meant significant and repeated reductions in our financial settlements. The current position means that, in seeking to best protect Education and Social Care Services (48.3% and 28.8% of our annual spend respectively), we are simply be unable to continue to deliver the non-statutory services our residents and visitors expect at locations like Barry Island; unless additional funding is made available.

    In terms of the detail, the overall settlement is an average reduction of 0.3% across local authorities in Wales. In the Vale of Glamorgan the reduction is 0.7%, which equates to a cash reduction of £1.037m. In real terms, taking into account inflation and other known pressures such as national pay inflation and the non-funded teachers’ pension scheme, the budget reduction is more akin to 4.2%.

    The impact that this reduction will have on local services and, therefore, local tax payers is unprecedented. In this Council revenue savings in excess of £50m have been identified and delivered since 2010/2011. The Directorate of Environment and Housing (the Directorate responsible for Car Parking, Highways, Waste Management, Shared Regulatory Services and Parks etc.) alone, has seen a budget reduction of 26% [£8.1m] since 2015. The Council now needs to save £3m in 2019/20 and a further £12m over the following two years just to keep within the available budget. 

    Our preference is not to upset our residents or come into conflict with local businesses. However, we believe we must introduce parking charges now to help protect frontline services and ensure that those who are using the car parking provision pay for its use at source. One of the alternatives would be to increase Council tax to cover the costs of car parking, resulting in the whole community paying, irrespective of whether or not they use the car parks. We feel that this would be unfair. 


    Whilst many are suggesting that charging for car parking can only have a negative impact on businesses in the Vale, we do not believe this to be true. Studies have shown that better management of parking can enable more productive use of (sometimes very limited) public spaces within towns. It is inevitable that there will be some inconvenience for shop workers and traders, who may have to park further away so that nearby parking spaces may be used by shoppers. However, it is these shoppers who, due to their improved access to shops / amenities, will spend money at these locations.    

  • Why are you not charging for parking at the Civic Offices in Barry and at other Council Offices?

    Charges are only being proposed where there is either shopper or visitor parking demand. The Civic Offices car park in Barry was included as part of the assessment of options by Capita. Their survey identified only 14 of the 140 spaces being used on a Saturday when Holton Road was at its busiest. The free weekend parking provision at the Civic Offices will continue which could prove useful for traders and their staff.  

  •  Why are on-street parking charges proposed at Barry Island and Penarth Esplanade?

    At both of these premier visitor locations ‘on-street’ car parking closest to the amenities is free, when there are off street car parks further away that are chargeable (summer season only proposed in Penarth). This is an anomaly in itself, as there is a clear incentive to park ‘on-street’, rather than in the car park. Whilst there are a range of on-street parking restrictions in these areas these do little to assist parking demand and / or encourage use of the car parks nearby. It is very often difficult to find an ‘on-street’ parking space due to the high demand for these spaces and the all year round on-street charges at these locations reflects their popularity with visitors. Parking turnover will increase with on-street charges and congestion should reduce with more drivers choosing to use the car parks, rather than to dive around looking for an on-street space. Income, in the region of £100k per annum would also be realised from on-street parking charges and this would assist in covering the costs of the provision of parking with any surpluses used to fund parking and highway infrastructure and improved transport arrangements. 

  •  Where are the traders going to park at Barry Island and Penarth Esplanade when on-street charges are brought in? 

    One of the problems with the current on-street parking arrangements is the over reliance of traders on parking close to their businesses. Whilst this is understandable, parking locations closest to shops and businesses should be left free for shoppers who wish to use those businesses, thus helping to increases accessibility and ultimately, footfall. 

    Traders are encouraged to park further away from the amenities, using the off street car parks if necessary, where the purchase of an all year round parking tickets is an option. Alternatively they could utilise active travel alternatives to the motor car. 

    Certain traders have said that they will just park on-street at Barry Island where there are no charges proposed and this could affect residents. What will the Council do about this?  
    If this does happen, it will not be the case for long. We have plans to introduce more controlled parking zones at locations such as Barry Island to support residents whose parking availability outside their homes is affected by the introduction of the Parking Policy.


    Our officers will assess the parking displacement patterns resulting from the Policy and will then look to introduce on street parking controls directly targeted at the problem to protect residents. 

  •  Why are the proposed charges seasonal at the Knap and not at Barry Island?

    This reflects the popularity of the areas with visitors. Barry Island is busier all year round than the Knap area and the charges reflect this increased activity and the resources required to support it.