Park and ride bid to boost shopping

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A NEW festive park and ride scheme has been launched to help shoppers get into Blackpool town centre.

Blackpool Council and Blackpool Transport have joined forces to introduce the system which will allow shoppers to park on the fringes of the town centre and get a tram ticket for a discounted price.

Cars will also be able to use specially designated loading bays for short pick up points over the festive period.

And it is a welcome measure for traders.

Warwick Tunnicliffe, chairman of St John’s and Cedar Square Traders Association, said: “If there’s parking outside of town and the chance of a ride in then people will use it because parking is quite expensive in the centre of Blackpool.

“Some people will find this invaluable and I hope they extend them after Christmas and New Year to support businesses.”

The scheme will now run until Friday, January 4 to include sale shoppers.

Cars will be able to park in either Gynn Car Park or South Promenade on-street pay and display bays between Starr Gate and Manchester Square, all day after 10am for 20p.

A £5 tram ticket will then pay for all day travel for a family of up to two adults and up to three children, or one adult and four children.

Sarah McConville, owner of Blueberries clothing shop on Topping Street, said: “This will help because we’ve had an awful lot of complaints from people who can’t get into Blackpool because of the roadworks.

“Cars are queueing all along Church Street and we’ve heard of customers waiting 20 minutes and when they get into town can’t find a space.”

Special loading bays on Clifton Street, Market Street, New Bonny Street, Albert Road and Coronation Street can also be used as short pick up points to collect shoppers from the town centre and can be identified by ‘Loading for Christmas Shopping’ signs on bays.

Shoppers are also able to park for free on West Street and East Topping Street car parks for free every Thursday night throughout December.

Coun Fred Jackson, Blackpool Council cabinet ember for streets and transport, said: “We have priced the offer very carefully, so it provides excellent value for money and will entice shoppers into the town centre.”

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