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Views aired at recent council meeting
HOOK is a “second-class settlement” when it comes to parking provision.
That was one view expressed at a meeting of Hook Parish Council, where members looked at how to solve parking problems in the village.
Councillor Martin Whittaker, chairman of the parish council, said that parking needed to be looked at again in light of plans to build hundreds of homes to the north east of the village.
The meeting heard that the parish council had previously looked at subsidising peak hours at the Reading Road car park, which is owned by Hart District Council, as a way of attracting more people to use it.
Cllr Fergus Kirkham, a former district councillor, said: “When Hart redid Fleet High Street, as a sop to the shopkeepers, they made some of the parking bays red (free).
“If they can do it in Fleet, they can do it in Hook. Once again, Hook is being treated as a second-class settlement.”
As previously reported in The Gazette , the parish council has looked at buying the car park outright from the district council, but rejected the idea as it was too expensive. In 2010, the parish council abolished a subsidised free parking scheme for the car park.
Issues highlighted at the meeting included rail commuters parking in residential roads and the problems at peak times at Hook Junior and Infant schools, in Church View.
Cllr Whittaker said: “Hart feel they cannot afford to lose revenue around the car parks and cannot afford to help us. That’s the reality.”
The parish council agreed to further investigate parking, with a view to holding a public meeting with their findings.
Cllr Jonathan Glen, Hart environment Cabinet member, said Hart is reviewing parking and all comments would be considered. He added: “I am as proud of Hook as Cllr Kirkham is.”