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Off-street car park changes come into effect across borough

Traffic attendants patrolling off-street car parks in ABC will now be dressed in a blue uniform, instead of a red one

Signage detailing the changes at the Friary Road carpark in Armagh

New changes to ABC Council’s off-street car parks came in to force this week, including new ‘blue-coat’ enforcement officers and a new cashless parking system.

The changes come after ABC Council entered into a new enforcement contract with Marston (Holdings) Ltd to provide enforcement services within council’s off-street car parks.

While the changes commenced on April 1, enforcement did not begin until today (April 3) as April 1 and 2 are non-charging days due to the Easter holidays.

Since 2015, enforcement had been provided through an agency agreement with the Department for Infrastructure. However, Marston (Holdings) Ltd will now provide these services in the borough together with seven other council areas in Northern Ireland.

Off-street car parks across Northern Ireland will be affected, with traffic attendants patrolling these now dressed in a blue uniform, instead of a red one.

ABC Council have said their responsibilities and legal authority remain the same, and any Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) issued will be valid.

Tariffs in the off-street car parks will remain unchanged.

The new contract will also see the introduction of a new cashless parking system in operation at the council’s pay and display off-street car parks in Armagh, Banbridge, Lurgan and Portadown.

The JustPark app will be replaced by the RingGo app, enabling car park users to continue to have the option to pay through their mobile phones, alongside the traditional cash payment option.

The new changes don’t herald the total disappearance of the ‘red-coats’ however, as these attendants will still be enforcing on-street parking through DfI. The JustPark app will also be retained for cashless payments for on-street parking.

Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Alderman Margaret Tinsley commented: “These changes to council owned off-street car parking should be minimal and therefore won’t present too much inconvenience to users.

“The new app should continue to provide an easy alternative to paying in cash for parking, without the worry of running out of parking time. I encourage all regular users of the car parks to ensure they download the new app and be ready for April 3.”

Car park season tickets, which are already available at most Pay and Display car parks, will continue to be available to those who wish to purchase in advance.

Tickets already purchased will remain valid until their expiry date.

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