Uncertain future for Berwick car park

Castlegate overflow car park in Berwick.
Castlegate overflow car park in Berwick.

Concerns about the possible loss of the Castlegate overflow car park have been raised by Berwick Town Council.

The temporary planning permission for its use during the summer months expires this spring, prompting councillors to express fears of a major shortage of parking spaces should it not be renewed.

A letter sent by the authority to Northumberland County Council describes the situation as ‘a crisis and potential disaster for the town’.

It also criticises the lack of a Plan B should the town lose so many spaces.

Town councillors say the uncertainty about Castlegate’s short-term future makes it impossible to respond to the county council’s consultation on medium term solutions to car parking problems.

A county council spokesman said: “As part of the study we recognise the possible loss of the overflow area of Castlegate car park which only has a temporary planning consent. This has been taken into account when considering options for future car parking provision.

“Castlegate overflow car park only has temporary planning consent, which currently expires at the end of May 2018, and identifying the current capacity and parking needs of the town as part of the study was necessary before we could consider submitting any applications for further planning consent.

“Having received the consultants conclusions on car parking capacity from the study and received initial feedback, we are now in the process of preparing an application for a further temporary planning consent for the Castlegate overflow car park.

“This will need to go through due process, but the granting of further planning consent would allow further discussion and consideration of the longer term approach to parking provision within the town. We will be continuing to work with the town council and the local community on these issues and continue to welcome all feedback and views.”