Simplified proposals to improve parking management in North Berwick are to be brought forward in response to public feedback.

East Lothian Council had engaged extensively on proposals including the introduction of controlled parking zones, with permits available for residents for an annual charge, and time restrictions and charges for on street parking and parking within the town centre off street car parks.

A report considered at Tuesday’s full meeting of East Lothian Council highlighted a significant public response to the publication of a draft Traffic Regulation Order, raising a number of objections and concerns.

Elected members approved a recommendation for officers to promote new Traffic Regulation Orders, with simplified proposals which take account of objections and feedback.

In simplifying the proposals, officers will look to draw a distinction between on and off street parking, as well as addressing motorhome parking provision.

They also approved a recommendation to hold concurrent parking management consultations for East Lothian’s other five biggest towns, with a view to drafting and publishing orders introducing parking restrictions in due course. Timescales for this will be confirmed in due course but it is anticipated this will enable the council to move faster with its parking management review.

Councillor John McMillan, Cabinet Spokesperson for Environment, Economic Development and Tourism, said:

“We know demand for parking spaces in East Lothian town centres can be high and it is often, particularly during busy periods, difficult for people to find a space.

“Proposals brought forward were designed to increase the turnover of spaces so that people benefit from easier access to town centres and their surroundings, increasing business footfall in the process.

“We want to improve parking management alongside making our town centres safer, enhancing the environment, promoting active travel and encouraging use of public transport.

“Most other council areas in Scotland already have a form of town centre parking charges and it is clear that incorporating charges, alongside other restrictions and residents parking, is a necessary part of improved parking management in East Lothian.

“There has been considerable interest in this issue and the decision of councillors requires officers to take account of feedback that has been received through publication of new Traffic Regulation Orders. We recognise there are a range of views and it is important to show that we are listening.

“Bringing forward simplified proposals should, in the first instance, enable us to progress positive changes to town centre parking arrangements in North Berwick.

“This will then provide us with a template that can be used to progress consultation on town centre parking schemes in our other towns.”

Read the report.

Published: Wednesday, 28th February 2024