Visitors and shoppers to Cambridge will be able to use the Cambridgeshire County Council car park at Shire Hall to help ease parking in the city and make better use of the public site.

From Monday 5 December people will be able to park at the Shire Hall site on Castle Hill. CB3 0AP. Fifty spaces will be available weekdays and 300 spaces Saturday and Sunday. The opening of the car park, much of it under cover at the weekend, is ready for Christmas and it will stay open for the rest of the year.

Currently only part of the parking is open to the public at the weekend but to help reduce the pressure on City Centre car parks and make better use of the public facility the Council is making more of it available.

People will be able to park at the site from 8am till midnight. The cost of parking will be £1 per hour 9am to 7pm Monday to Saturday and 60p per hour 9am to 5pm Sunday.

New parking machines will be put in place that are easy to use and can take credit cards or contactless payment as well as using a phone or cash.

Cambridgeshire County Councillor Roger Hickford, Chairman of the Assets and Investments Committee, said: "With parking at a premium in the city, especially at Christmas, we wanted to make sure we got the best use for the tax payer of this public facility. By opening most of the Shire Hall car parks at the weekend and providing 300 spaces not only are we supporting the local economy and helping drivers but also any income from the parking can be used to help support vital Council services. This is especially important at a time when Government funding is being taken away."

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