Picture: Rebecca Hill.

A meeting to discuss plans for parking permits in Hunstanton was met with protests this week.

The Norfolk County Council proposals suggest residents pay £40 a year to park in areas including York Avenue, Hill Street and Cliff Parade.

Parking has been a problem for town centre residents, particularly in the summer, and a survey earlier this year showed support for changes.

But the permit idea was met with anger and protestors made their feelings known on Monday at the town hall.

Organiser Sandy Duff-Dick said the plans would have an adverse effect on the town’s community.

“There is a lot of opposition because the council is looking to charge £40 a car for residents and you only get one visitor permit. It will cost more for businesses like ours,” said

Mrs Duff-Dick who runs the Rosamaly Guest House in the  town’s Glebe Avenue.

“There were a lot of people protesting on Monday. They see it just as another tax,” she added.

Some residents also felt the survey was misleading as it didn’t mention the details of the scheme, she said.

“It simply asked whether we were happy with our current parking situation, If we had known about the plans then maybe people would not have supported the changes.”

Hunstanton resident and Norfolk County Council member Richard Bird said nothing would be done against the wishes of the population of the town.

“I have lived in the area more than 40 years and I have listened to complaints about parking for a long time. An opportunity came along to change that and we issued a survey.

“We got a response of 48 per cent from the public and the majoriy of that indicated the town was unhappy with the current parking situation. So we suggested these plans but the bottom line seems to be that people don’t want to pay £40 to park,” he said.

Residents can continue to vote on the new parking plans until Monday and if less than half are in favour of the idea then it will be abandoned.

But if more than 50 per cent want the permits then each road will need more than 74 per cent in favour before the changes are implemented.

“All the votes will be announced and I will make it my personal business for this process to be completely transparent and the most democratic it can be.

“I want what’s best for the town,” said Mr Bird.