CHRISTMAS shoppers can enjoy free parking and discounted bus fares in Christchurch next month as part of efforts to support local high streets.
Those visiting Christchurch, Bournemouth and Poole before Christmas in December on Thursday evenings from 4pm-10pm and Sundays from 10am-6pm will not be charged at town centre car parks.
Christchurch Town Council has also decided to make its car parks free on Saturdays between midday and 6pm during December until Christmas.
Local car parks included in the scheme are: Bypass, Bargates, Leisure Centre, Bridge Street, Saxon Square, Christchurch Quay, Priory, Wick Lane, Bank Close, Pit Site and Mayor’s Mead.
Christchurch mayor Cllr Lesley Dedman said: “We really want to encourage as many people as possible to come to the town to support our brilliant traders in what has been an incredibly challenging time for all high street and town centres.”
She added: “We would ask everyone visiting to observe the appropriate social distancing and other Covid safety measures.”
Bus passengers will also benefit, with Yellow Buses and Morebus offering tickets permitting up to five people to travel together on any number of journeys for just £5 – a saving of £7.
These will be available to buy from drivers every Sunday and Thursday evening in December prior to Christmas, except Christmas Eve, and will only be valid for the operator
from which they were purchased.
Andrew Barfield, president of Christchurch Chamber of Trade and Commerce, said businesses will be “more than ready” to welcome customers back in December.
“We’re pleased that the council and bus companies have coordinated their efforts to ensure that both car and bus users have even more incentive to enjoy the lovely shopping experience that Christchurch provides,” he said.