FEWER parking spaces in the city centre and thousands of new trees are among the measures set to be taken to tackle pollution in Southampton.

City bosses are planning to increase the number of charging points for electric vehicles, plant 5,000 trees, create 25 urban meadows and reduce the number of parking spaces in the city centre over the next years.

It comes as they have unveiled their plans to fight pollution.

Further details are yet to be finalised and it is not yet known what area of the city centre would see a reduction in parking spaces.

But the city council has confirmed that wildflowers will be planted at different locations including Redbridge Roundabout and Hoglands Park.

According to the plans, Woolston and St Deny's are also set to become the first active travel zones in the city.

This means that residents will be encouraged to walk and cycle and a number of measures to discourage traffic will be implemented.

The newly announced measures are part of the Green City Charter's delivery plan.

The authority said the plan will be updated every three years and stressed that civic chiefs have been "ambitious" by recognising the scale of work needed and "realistic" by identifying there is a need to improve their understanding and establish more detailed actions.

But opposition councillors have criticised the plan saying it is not enough.

Cllr Steve Galton described the plan as a "small step in the right direction". But he added: "To me that just does not seem to have the details and the steps that we want to see to have confidence that we are going to get where we want to get. I'm not satisfied with Labour. They have spent nearly a year to come up with this plan and I just looked at them and thought why have we waited one year for this. I don't think they even know what they are trying to achieve with it. This is why we called this one in. "

As previously reported, the charter was expected to be launched in March last year but the launch was delayed after opposition councillors called the charter "back-in" to debate it further.

Lyn Brayshaw, from Friends of the Earth Southampton, welcomed the new delivery plan.

"We would love it to be much more radical but a little step is a step in the right direction," she said.

Cllr Steve Leggett, cabinet member for green city and environment at the city council, highlighted a number of measures that the authority is already taking to fight pollution.

These include more cycle lanes, charging points for electric vehicles and support to taxi companies that are asked to switch to less polluting cars.

He added: "We are delighted to have our Green City Plan for the city completed. We have ensured our plan is detailed and identifies the approach and principles we will apply. The Green City Charter vision is to create a cleaner, greener, healthier and more sustainable city and the council intends to lead by example. Southampton City Council is leading in delivering air quality improvements and have been able to demonstrate a steady reduction in the levels of key pollutants over the last 10 years. We have been actively working to reduce our impact on the local environment. We have reported a 54% reduction in carbon emissions from council commercial buildings."