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Members of a King’s Lynn forum are calling for a designated residents’ car parking area as pay meters are set to come into force at the South Quay in the new year.

St Margaret’s with St Nicholas Ward members have claimed they have not been  fully consulted by Norfolk County Council officials regarding the introduction of parking charges.

Resident Sally Smith, who lives in Queen Street, said council officials assumed residents would not want a permit as they had opposed the introduction of car park charges.

“Forum members are very unhappy about the lack of consultation,” she said.

“We were told we would hear when the consultation was over, but everything went quiet.”

Forum chairman, Dr Julian Litten, explained  ward parking was already severely limited.

He said:  “Few houses have any space for cars, let alone garages and so people are forced to park on the street – if they can.

“In the Friars, where there is barely room for a vehicle outside their house, residents have to compete with shoppers and visitors to the town, who put their vehicles there to avoid the charges on the car parks.”

Dr Litten said members felt a dedicated area within the Boal Quay car park for ward residents would go “a long way” to solve the problem.

In March 2014, a letter from Norfolk County Council was sent to residents which asked for their views about the introduction of parking  charges along South Quay and King’s Staithe Square.

However, in a letter this month to Tom McCabe, executive director of community and environmental services at the county council, Dr Litten said residents “were not given the opportunity” to comment on parking options.

He added residents have not been told of the consultation responses.

Meanwhile, Norfolk County Council has confirmed meters on the South Quay will come into force from Friday, January 29.

A council spokesman said: “In terms of the consultation, a survey was sent to 265 people in the area and the responses indicated general support for the proposals for South Quay.

“The Traffic Order was advertised in the media and notices were up on the website for eight weeks. No additional comments were received in response to those.”

The spokesman explained: “When it comes to parking, it’s always a challenge to strike the right balance between residents’ needs, supporting the town’s local businesses and reinvigorating the economy.

“The forum has suggested a number of constructive ideas which are worth considering as we continue to work with West Norfolk Council to look at ways of addressing the parking pressures in King’s Lynn.”