Drivers’ woe as Sheffield car park closes

Alma street car park
Alma street car park
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A decision to force the closure of a car park at the edge of Sheffield city centre has been attacked as ‘bonkers’.

Bowsfield Investments was using the cleared site of the firmer Richardsons Cutlery Works, on Alma Street, Kelham Island, as a temporary pay-and-display car park - used by hundreds of motorists a day.

The company was refused planning permission to continue by Sheffield Council last August, but appealed to the Planning Inspectorate.

However, planning inspector Keith Turner upheld the council’s decision and the car park has been forced to close this week.

Duncan Shaw, manager of the nearby Fat Cat pub, said: “I think the decision is bonkers.

“There were one or two hundred cars parked at the site every day – it is a service people used.

“All I can see happening now is the site will have people dumping stuff on it.

“Developing the site would be good, but I can’t see anything wrong with it being used as a car park in the meantime.”

One user said: “I can’t understand where all the motorists who use it are going to go or why it needs to close – the site is not being redeveloped at present and will just be derelict.

“The £2 a day cost is more reasonable than car parks in the city centre. I think some of the drivers will struggle to afford to park elsewhere.”

The disused site has planning permission for a mixed-use development, which was approved in 2006 and renewed in 2011.

The car park was granted temporary permission for 18 months.

Planning inspector Mr Turner has ordered that the land ceases to be used as a car park, that vehicle entrances to the site are closed and that all signage and ticket machines are removed.

A wall on Cotton Street, adjoining the site, which had been removed to enable cars to drive in, has to be rebuilt.

The car park closed on Monday.

Sheffield Council said it wanted permanent redevelopment of the site to go ahead.