Additional payment options in Haslemere car parks will become available ‘quite soon’, says Waverley Borough Council’s head of Environmental Services, Richard Homewood.

Speaking at the regular meeting of Waverley chamber leaders and the council last week, he said all payment machines in borough-managed car parks in Haslemere, Godalming, Farnham and Cranleigh had been upgraded to accept the new £1 coin. Machines in the 10 busiest car parks – including the High Street and Chestnut Avenue car parks in Haslemere – had also been upgraded for contactless card payments.

Card payments are already available in Cranleigh, where the new clock-in/clock-out service is under trial. On arrival, motorists enter their vehicle registration and present a debit or credit card. On departure they simply present the same card.

Richard Homewood said this system would be rolled out to Haslemere and the other towns once the council was satisfied that any teething troubles had been satisfactorily overcome.

The council is also monitoring card payment for conventional ticketing in Cranleigh. The rollout of this option is expected soon, although the timing has not yet been decided.

The new systems are designed to make car parks more user-friendly, by giving motorists a choice of payment options: cash, card, clock-in/clock-out and mobile phone. The RingGo phone app payment service now accounts for 38% of parking transactions, according to Richard Homewood.

While welcoming these developments, Haslemere Chamber is conscious that they do not solve all the parking issues that impact town centre and Wey Hill businesses, or the wider public.

The Chamber believes a co-ordinated approach involving town and borough councils, Surrey County Council and the rail franchisee is needed to provide the best possible parking solutions for business, residents, visitors and commuters. As a first step, the Chamber plans to meet Richard Homewood in the near future to discuss charging strategies.