MALVERN Hills District Council is introducing free parking in one of its car parks to support businesses in Barnards Green affected by roadworks.

From now, and up to and including Sunday, July 4, people will be able to park for free in the council’s pay and display car park on Geraldine Road.

The decision follows the news of Severn Trent's replacement of old pipes in Barnards Green Road being delayed.

This means free parking bays will be out of action for longer than expected.

District councillor Daniel Walton said: “The fact these roadworks were allowed to happen, less than a month after lockdown restrictions on non-essential retail ended is bad enough, but for them not to be completed on time is unacceptable and a further blow to businesses in Barnards Green.

"By offering free parking at our Geraldine Road Car Park for the next two weeks we are supporting our traders and residents who need to access the many wonderful shops, cafes and other businesses in Barnards Green.”

County councillor Jack Satterthwaite, who represents the area, said: "Some free parking is a welcome step forward to support traders in Barnards Green during the essential utility works.

"However, the District Council have refused to do this for the full time the roadworks will be there.

"The District Council have covered free parking until the 4th of July but the roadworks don’t finish until July23 at the earliest.

"Nearly three weeks of no support at the end of three lockdowns and long roadworks is not good enough from Malvern Hills District Council.

"Barnards Green’s businesses and residents need free parking until the roadworks are gone.

"The businesses on Barnards Green have told me they need this."