A LAST-ditch attempt to block Wiltshire Council from introducing new car parking charges across the county has gained more than 1,000 signatures.

Charges for Sundays and Bank Holidays will be introduced across towns in Wiltshire from November 19.

Residents with on-street parking permits will also see their charges go up, if the plans go ahead.

Julie Exton, deputy mayor of Malmesbury, set up the online petition on Friday to get the plans debated at a full council meeting before they can be introduced.

Julie told the Adver: “Unless you're going to pay an awful lot of money, this is going to totally effect everybody, from going to the shops, tourists, and visiting church.

“It’s not only Malmesbury where I live, it’s going to be all the towns that it's going to affect their Sunday trade. It will affect the county as a whole.

“For any fundraising events on those days people are going to have to start paying which will make them consider whether they want to go and pay those charges.

“In Malmesbury you're reliant on cars to get in and out of the town and most other towns have the same problem with Sunday transport with very few services running."

A separate petition has been started by Wiltshire councillor for the Liberal Democrats Gavin Grant.

The two petitions will be handed in together so each one needs to attract 2,500 signatures to prompt a debate by Wiltshire Council to reconsider the new charges.

“Hopefully together we can get the numbers we need to get it re-looked at,” added Julie.

Wiltshire Council held a consultation in 2017 with local authorities, many of whom objected to the proposals.

The new charges could mean some residents on Royal Wootton Bassett will see an increase in their parking permits from £160 to more than £400.

David Bowler, town councillor for Royal Wootton Bassett, told the Adver: “That increase is plainly unacceptable. It’s going to impact on the people that can’t afford it. Those residents feel as if it's an additional tax on top of the council tax

“It feels as if the conservative group at country has brought it in regardless of what resident have said and are still going ahead with it.

“There should be other ways Wiltshire can balance the books, I think they need to take a longer look.”

Steve Walls, deputy mayor of Royal Wootton Bassett Town Council, added: "This will not help the local economy of the town. There's an Aldi due to open which will have free parking. And it's in the run up to Christmas, it doesn't seem terribly logical."

To sign the petition, go to you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/wiltshire-against-sunday-and-bank-holiday-parking-charges?fbclid=IwAR1vfiy6UGEU1MNkc7vc6sqDifNu0NBBmCUTSvsEvY5c5-FHWcK0y4D7Qz8