Council supports businesses with free parking

New Forest District Council is offering free car parking on Saturday 6 December as part of its support for local business.

Shoppers will be able to park for free in all council-run car parks to mark ‘Small Business Saturday’ – a national campaign aimed at encouraging people to shop local and support independent shops.

Leader of New Forest District Council, Councillor Barry Rickman, said: “We’re happy to be supporting local businesses by waiving our parking charges on Small Business Saturday. Many towns across the UK will be holding special events and we hope that our towns and villages will take advantage of the free parking to encourage local spending on the day. I’d urge everyone to consider shopping locally and supporting small businesses in the run up to Christmas.”

The 2015 Brand New Forest card will also be launched in Lymington on 6 December. The card scheme, now in its fifth year, is designed to stimulate local business activity throughout the year by providing cardholders with special offers and discounts across the New Forest. The cost of a card is £5. For more information visit brandnewforest.com

Cllr Rickman added: “Small businesses count for a significant part of our local economy. Small Business Saturday gives us a great opportunity to celebrate the role they play and our own commitment to helping them to promote themselves to our residents and visitors. There are over 6000 small businesses in the New Forest and we are very pleased to help raise their profile on this important day.”

The free car parking offer only applies to car parks that are managed by New Forest District Council.

In addition to free parking on 6 December, the council has invited New Forest towns and parishes to choose a date in the lead up to Christmas on which parking in council car parks will be free.