PLANS to introduce parking charges at three popular Tynedale car parks are set to be scrapped after public opposition.

Northumberland County Council recently revealed that it would introduce parking charges of £3 a day at Prudhoe railway station, Prudhoe’s Riverside Park and Haltwhistle Railway Station.

However following a detailed consultation, the council is now recommending that free parking remains at the sites. The decision will need to be ratified by next month’s Cabinet meeting.

A petition set up by Prudhoe and District Labour Party, which received 1,543 signatures, was handed in to Northumberland County Council’s headquarters at County Hall last week. The petition formed part of the feedback for the consultation on the proposals, which took place between November and January.

The plans were part of a county council investment of £10m into parking improvements throughout the county, with an estimated £404,000 due to be generated from the introduction of the charges.

Local Conservative Prudhoe councillors Gordon Stewart and Ken Stow made strong representations to the council during the consultation.

Coun. Ken Stow, whose ward includes the two car parks, said: “I’m delighted that the council has listened to the concerns of our residents and has dropped these plans. These car parks are important facilities for local people.”

Coun. Stewart added: “This decision supports the exciting developments we have happening in Prudhoe.”

Glen Sanderson, cabinet member for local services said: “I have listened to Gordon and Ken and have sympathy with their concerns.

“We will no longer be continuing with our proposals in Prudhoe.”