Sheffield’s parking permit price is third highest

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Sheffield has the third highest price for residents’ parking permits out of cities in the north and Midlands regions.

Only the tourist hotspots of York and Chester charge more than the £36 it now costs in Sheffield for a first permit, with prices there currently at £93 and £60 respectively.

In nine cities, including Leeds, Nottingham and Manchester, the permits are free.

The Star has checked the costs charged in 18 other cities after residents launched a campaign to take Sheffield Council to court over the increase in permit charges, which have risen from £10 to £36 in two years.

They claim the council is generating revenue from permits despite it being banned by law – which the council says is not true.

Michael Marsh, chairman of Sheffielders For Parking Fairness, said: “In Nottingham you can have up to three permits for nothing, which would cost hundreds here – its just outrageous.

“York’s permits are more expensive than Sheffield’s but it is a tourist hot spot and they have major parking problems.

“Sheffield is not a tourist destination.”

Residents did not mind paying for permits to regulate parking in busy areas when the cost was £10, said Central Coun Rob Murphy.

He and fellow Green councillors were among those who campaigned for the permits to be reduced in price in 2010. Costs have risen twice since.

Coun Murphy added: “It’s not only the increase but there have been delays with applying for permits, people have been held up for weeks while they have no alternative so they end up using pay and display.

“I think people didn’t mind paying when they were paying a little bit towards running the scheme, but now they are paying towards the profit of it.”

Nearby towns also charge less for parking permits, although in Chesterfield the price is close to Sheffield’s, at £35.

York Council said it offered a range of costs, discounts and incentives which could halve the £93-a-year average fee for a resident parking permit, which has applied for five years.

Permits for one council estate popular with students are free as the university subsidises it.

Some readers pointed out higher permit prices charged by other councils, including Brighton where it is £120 a year and Westminster where it costs £140 a year.

But Nadeem Akram said: “Residents shouldn’t have to pay to park outside their own property.”

Sheffield Council did not respond in time to requests for a comment.

The authority has previously said it still subsidises permits and does not make a profit from them.