Parking meters up and running

Councillor Gillian Owen has welcomed the new parking regime in Ellon.
Councillor Gillian Owen has welcomed the new parking regime in Ellon.

An Ellon councillor has welcomed the end of a long-running problem with parking machines in the town.

Replacement meters are now operational following repeated delays due to software problems.

Councillor Gillian Owen, a fierce critic of the hold-up and who at one stage branded it a ‘farce’, said she was sure the local community would be delighted that the new parking regime is finally in place,

Councillors approved plans for the replacement of machines across Aberdeenshire at a cost of £95,000 in June, 2014, and the system was due to be introduced in autumn of that year.

The authority was criticised by some local politicians who complained that valuable revenue was being lost with the machines being out of action.

New meters in Ellon began operating last Thursday and motorists can have a free half-hour of parking before the charges come into effect.

Councillor Owen said: “This has been a long running saga which has not shown the council in its best light.

“I have been assured, however, that processes have now been put in place to make sure this type of delay does not happen in the future.

“Ellon now has a new parking regime with the introduction of a new tariff which includes a free 30-minute period, and I am sure residents will be as delighted as I am that their views have been taken into account.”

An Aberdeenshire Council spokeswoman said that machines in Ellon, Inverurie, Banchory, Huntly, Banff, Fraserburgh and Peterhead should now be fully operational.