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The public have responded magnificently to the Civic Society’s call for pledges to only consider election candidates who support the Free Parking petition.  For more details on this please click on  Free Parking Pledge, and for more details on the proposal itself please click on Free Parking.

But when sending in their pledges, a great many people have also included brief comments in support, and we feel it is only right to let everybody know what people are saying.  After all, our byline is “Voice of the People,” and this truly is just that.  If you’ve sent in a comment and don’t see it here, please don’t be offended - there are just so many of them we simply can’t include everybody’s and we’ve had to select at random - but this is just the start, we will add more as time permits.  Thanks to everybody for your comments - it is heartening to know how many people really care about  the Town.

The comments below are in no particular order, and in order to protect identities we have only included the initials of the authors.

It is important to the local economy to show that Bognor Regis welcomes paying customers and their cars.  JB

If free parking is allowed in Bognor it will bring so many more people into the town and can only be good for the local economy, so come on, let’s have free parking throughout Bognor!!  AW

Keep the local people in the Bognor vicinity keeping the shops open and not being shut down and empty. Free parking stops locals and tourists going to retail parks where parking is free always. NA

As a local retailer I see the free parking initiative as the only option to provide immediate, low cost, sustainable growth in the Bognor Regis economy.  CH

The people responsible for any charges on parking should realise just how greedy they are and how much they are stifling growth in this great town - fire them all and save even more money!!  KW

This is so important for Bognor in these times when a town centre needs all the help it can get to draw people in. CO

When will they realise that all these fancy ideas like watersports and arts centres are just expensive pie-in-the-sky which will do next to nothing to regenerate the town. Practical down-to-earth projects like free parking that can be done right now is what we need to start to bring people back into the town. MS

Do something for the residents of Bognor and our visitors, that would be a nice change. The public getting something given back to them!  I’m definitely backing this petition...good job guys. D

Bognor needs free parking in the town centre to encourage more people to shop here, or we will see more businesses close down or move elsewhere.  That would be a disaster for the town. AB

Too long in coming, should have been in ages ago.  We have been subsidising Littlehampton and Rustington to the tune of £14,500, well more than that as there are probably more council tax payers this side, for the past 14 years. MH

We need people to use Bognor because we have not got a lot to offer for people to come here. So if they know they do not have to pay parking they may visit Bognor. JW

Littlehampton have free parking, so should Bognor Regis.  Bognor Regis has always been neglected, no wonder it is going downhill, even the immigrants complain about it now.  DH

It’s about time the members of Arun DC  started getting in the real world and looking after the interests of their electors instead of their own interests first. RB

Local shops need this to continue trading.  People will go elsewhere to retail industrial sites where parking is free, rather than have to pay all the time.  This money adds up over the week - better to shop where it’s free. SA

This should be allowed, it works all places I go to.....people will just go to different towns...not spend money here and we lose our shops!!! Then our town!!! No more Bognor Regis!!! Why should we lose this for the sake of keeping relevant and current to what other councils are doing!!! CB

We’ve got £500,000 from Sainsburys and £2.7 million from Butlins so we can easily afford to do this if Arun don’t fritter it away on fancy stuff that puffs up their egos and does nothing much for the town - or spends it on Littlehampton.  We should be doing this now to help the town before all the money is wasted away. AH

Free parking would not only attract tourists but the local people who would use the shops all the time, rather than going to big supermarket and retail parks where the parking is always free.  AB

Littlehampton have it, so why can’t we? We’re a highly populated tourism town and can’t park in the summer or whenever they’re down - how is that fair?  They park there all day and pay the same price we pay!  Why should we pay money to shop in our local shops, our money is what keeps the shops going!  Why should we pay twice!? LM

We pay enough in Council Tax already.  How about being able to park free in areas we ‘the electorate’ already own.  Arun DC is only a forum to co-ordinate and provide the services we need - but they act like the Lord of the Manor with the rest of us mere serfs. CB

I am 100% in favour of the 2 hr free parking proposal for Bognor Regis.  Any initiative to bring prosperity into the town should be welcomed with open arms.  SC

This would attract a great deal more customers and visitors to the town who, like me, prefer to go elsewhere at the moment.. CH

Please don’t kill off our town centre.  We need this boost for the traders and to create a lively atmosphere. CD

Parking charges discourage essential visitors who are the lifeblood of Bognor as a seaside resort.  One of the reasons we are looking to move.  PT

This is a simple scheme that will benefit everyone.  MB

The Council should let us have something for our taxes as not much else happens in Bognor Regis.  TP

Make parking free in Bognor or see more and more trade go out-of-town. TC

Littlehampton and Rustington offer free parking so they get much of my shopping trade.  I’d like Bognor Regis to offer me the same courtesy - and they’ll get my trade.  AW

Parking is impossible in Bognor Regis.  We shop in Littlehampton - equidistant  from Walberton - because they have free parking.  BP

I went to Midhurst last Wednesday; I parked in a nice large ground level car park which was free for the first two hours. I found Midhurst to be a lively thriving shopping centre with only one shop closed. RH

As a retailer we relied  heavily on customers spending time in our shop, browsing the shop and making impulse purchases. However, the Arun District Council’s parking policy and their parking charges have destroyed Bognor Regis as a retail experience.  The Arun District Council have been bleeding the shopping precinct in Bognor Regis white.  Not only do our customers have to pay several pounds in parking fees for a morning’s shopping, but our business rates were about 12% of our gross profit.  ER

I think availability of our existing parking facilities encourages visitors and shoppers.  Free parking is a bonus these days and can be the deciding factor as to where people choose to shop.  NM

Bognor Regis needs this as the current regeneration could very well be hit by it and and we might very well miss out on some more big name shops coming to Bognor (like ASDA for example). DC

After seeing what the exorbitant parking charges has done to businesses in Worthing, any Council that followed suit would need their heads testing! RP

Bognor as a town was neglected during recent years and people from around are avoiding coming in the town because there’s nothing there. Anybody from Pagham or Rose Green will go to Chichester, it’s time to get this town back on track. ZR

Bognor Regis needs all the help it can get these days, come on - do what’s right!!! SA

It’s simple logic - free parking will bring more shoppers, more shoppers will bring more and better shops, in no time at all the town will be busy and thriving again.  Why can’t the blockheads understand that? BM

Think about the bigger picture, free parking will bring visitors who will spend in the town. JC



As a Bognor Regis resident I fully support this pledge for free parking.  If this can bring more people to the town and help local businesses, this should be every election candidates’ top priority.  It’s not much to ask for.  JP


From a thriving seaside town I’ve seen Bognor decline with closed shops and few people shopping in the centre.  I remember free parking everywhere, hustle and bustle and traders and customers being busy all day.  Most shops now are of the ‘Pound’ variety with cheap goods for a cheap town.  Greed from the top down and apathy from the bottom up. MC