CHARGES for blue badge holders in off street Southampton car parks have been dropped.

Southampton City Council has now completed a six month trial of charges for blue badge holders and has now decided to withdraw the scheme.

The trial ran from November 1 until April 30 and covered nine off street car parks in the city.

The council said the charges were intended to encourage the turnover of vehicles so that spaces in high demand car parks were available for all car park users when they needed them.

But having consulted with blue badge holders and with Spectrum throughout on the impact of the scheme and after reviewing feedback the scheme has now been withdrawn.

Councillor Jeremy Moulton, Cabinet Member for Growth, commented: "We made a clear commitment while in opposition that we would remove this scheme and keep off street car parks free for blue badge holders.

"Now that we've reviewed the feedback from the trial with officers, it is clear that the charges are unnecessary and we will be removing them with immediate effect. We are pleased to follow through on our commitment at this early stage."

The council added that they saw a reduction in demand at many of the trial sites due to the pandemic.

The changes will be carried out immediately by removing the tariff boards outlining charges for Blue Badge Holders at the 9 trial sites.

The trial took place at:

• Albion Place

• Castle Way

• Harbour Parade

• Southbrook Road South

• Southbrook Road North

• Wyndham Place

• Commercial Road

• Grosvenor Square North

• Kings Park Road