parking machine with sign

Cheshire East Council is to re-introduce cash payments at its car parks from Monday August 17.

The move comes amid mounting anger from residents and local businesses in Nantwich ever since charges were brought back in June after a temporary lockdown suspension.

Cash (coin) payments at most car park machines was withdrawn and the authority said this was to reduce risk of virus transmission during these early stages of opening up town centres.

But many believe this has put many visitors and users off who are not confident or able to use contactless or parking apps on mobile devices.

Today’s move will come as a relief to local businesses who say their trade has been hit.

Crewe & Nantwich MP Kieran Mullan said: “This decision has taken too long and damaged local businesses but I welcome that common sense has finally prevailed thanks to pressure from local people and businesses refusing to be quiet about it.

Cheshire East have made a complete pig’s ear of the entire car parking situation to the detriment of Crewe and Nantwich ever since they prematurely brought charges back.

“They need to crack on with their parking review without delay and I hope they manage that with greater success.”

Cllr Laura Crane, cabinet member for highways and waste said: “I would like to thank residents for using car parks responsibly since lockdown measures have been lifted.

“I continue to strongly recommend that people use cashless payment options where this is possible.

“Our parking machines offer both ‘chip and pin’ and contactless options as means of payment.

“We also offer the alternative option to use ‘RingGo’, the mobile app, if someone wanted to avoid using the machine completely.

“We have found that a mobile app is the preferred option for many people and are looking to improve that offer over time.

“However, we recognise that cashless options are not the best payment option for everyone, and we are now offering cash payment for those who choose to use it.

“While Covid, and the risks it presents, has not gone away, we want to support and encourage people to come back into our town centres. But this needs to be done progressively and with care, with due regard to advice from public health professionals.

“As with all changes put into place in response to the Covid pandemic, these measures are being kept under review.”

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