THE Itchen Bridge toll is to be reinstated next month as travel across the city is expected to increase.

Southampton City Council has announced today that they will be reinstating the Itchen Bridge toll and charges in its long-stay car parks from June 1 following the government’s easing of national lockdown restrictions.

The Itchen Bridge toll was suspended on March 24 to help key workers and people supporting those in isolation in Southampton during the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic.

Following a review of the toll suspension, civic chiefs have decided to reinstate it next month.

Motorists will now be expected to pay on Monday to Friday between 7am and 6pm, and on Saturday between 8am and 6pm.

A further decision on whether to apply the toll 24 hours a day will be made after three weeks.

the council will also reinstate parking restrictions in its long-stay pay-and-display car parks from June 1.

The council’s four barrier-controlled multi-storey car parks - Bedford Place, Eastgate Street, Grosvenor Square, and Marlands - will return to normal operation on the same date.

The only exclusions are West Park Road multi-storey car park, which is being maintained as a free facility for key workers, and ‘limited waiting’ areas where there are no pay-and-display charges in place.

Councillor Steve Leggett, Cabinet Member for Green City and Place, Southampton City Council, said: “With Southampton starting to get back to a ‘new normal’ we feel the time is right to reinstate these charges, so we can cover the cost of operating these facilities.

"I realise this might not be a popular decision, but we must continue to prioritise the delivery of frontline services and support for key workers at this time, which is why some of our facilities remain free for them to use."

Any season ticket and Zone A permit purchased before April 3 will have its expiry date extended by two months.

This extension will be applied by Civil Enforcement Officers on their patrols, meaning paper season ticket holders won’t need to return their season tickets for the expiry date to be amended.

Residents who are categorised by the NHS as “extremely clinically vulnerable” and have vehicles parked in a council-run on-street or off-street parking facility should contact the council before June 1.