Windfall from renting out part of a car park to be used to promote free parking in run up to Christmas

PUBLISHED: 08:34 09 October 2014 | UPDATED: 08:34 09 October 2014

The post office in Ely's Paradise Centre car park

The post office in Ely's Paradise Centre car park

Archant

A pre Christmas publicity campaign is to be launched to promote free parking in the city - and its all thanks to the Post Office paying to hire part of a car park for the past year.

East Cambridgeshire District Council will receive £18,250 after agreeing to rent part of Newnham Street car park for a temporary post office.

Now a council sub committee is being asked to approve using part of the windfall sum to promote free parking.

Tracey Harding, team leader of the tourism and town centre services, says the cash could be used for the Christmas free parking campaign.

Her report, to next week’s asset development sub committee, says the council stepped in to find a suitable site for a temporary post office following the closure of the High Street branch.

To keep a post office in the city open on a temporary basis whilst a new branch was found, the council agreed to allow Newnham Street car park to house a mobile unit.

Ms Harding says the initial four month period from November 13 last year was extended to May, then to September, and now to December 5.

“Early indications are that the Post Office would be in a position to open in new premises in Market Street by mid-November,” she says. “Therefore no further extensions will be requested.”

As the money was unexpected her report says part of the £18,250 will now be considered “to launch a pre-Christmas campaign to promote free parking in the district”.

Businessman Devinder Singh is expecting to open a convenience store in a former bed shop, part of the old Central Hall, shortly. It will include a seven day a week post office.

A Post Office spokesman said: “We are confident this modern post office, with opening hours doubled, will meet the needs of the local community.”

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