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Man hits out after ‘outrageous’ wait to pay at seaside car park

PUBLISHED: 12:32 04 August 2020 | UPDATED: 09:56 05 August 2020

The queue David Matthews was faced with when trying to buy a ticket to park at Wells Beach Car Park. Picture: Supplied by David Matthews

The queue David Matthews was faced with when trying to buy a ticket to park at Wells Beach Car Park. Picture: Supplied by David Matthews

Archant

A holidaymaker has called for improvements after he had to wait more than an hour to buy a parking ticket at a popular seaside car park.

David Matthews, from London, with his two children. Mr Matthews was faced with a long wait when trying to buy a ticket to park at Wells Beach Car Park. Picture: Supplied by David MatthewsDavid Matthews, from London, with his two children. Mr Matthews was faced with a long wait when trying to buy a ticket to park at Wells Beach Car Park. Picture: Supplied by David Matthews

David Matthews, from St John’s Wood in London, was enjoying a break with his family in north Norfolk when they decided to go to the beach at Wells-next-the-Sea for the day on Thursday, July 30.

But after he found a parking spot at the car park at the end of Beach Road, which is owned by Holkham Estate, he had to spend more time there than expected before heading over to the sands with his children, aged 11 and two.

The Holkham Estate has said it is aware of “unprecedented demand” for the car park and that it is working to upgrade its payment situation.

Mr Matthews, 62, said: “This is outrageous. I think I spent over an hour queuing. There must have been 20 to 30 people in the queue and it takes everyone three or four minutes to pay, and it’s card only. This was at 10am and it was quite hot and sunny, I couldn’t leave the kids in the car.”

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He suggested Holkham could use a mobile app payment system such as RingGo to “save people from this unpleasant experience”.

Mr Matthews said he had thought about not buying a ticket - which was £9 for the day - and risk getting a charge notice from the car park staff, but decided against it.

The spokesperson said they were sorry for the wait Mr Matthews endured, and that they were looking at an alternative payment system for the car park.

He said: “We are fully aware of the unprecedented demand at the Wells beach car park, particularly on very hot days and on the weekends where we are seeing more people than normal travelling from afar for day trips.

“We have been actively working to upgrade our current system and are completely committed to finding a long-term solution, possibly looking into a car parking app, however this is unfortunately not a solution that is deliverable in a short time frame and is not viable this summer.

“We apologise for the inconvenience but hope that visitors to Holkham Beach are still able to enjoy a fantastic and safe day out.”


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