Highland Council U-turns on proposed overnight parking ban at Cairngorms beauty spot

Highland Council has made major changes to parking proposals at the Cairngorms’ most popular beauty spot including scrapping a ban on overnight stays after initial plans sparked a fierce backlash, the Inverness Courier reports.

The local authority has now also proposed that Pay and Display restrictions should only be in force from March 1 to October 31.

The revisions come in response to concerns and anger expressed during the local authority’s public consultation last Autumn.

The council has said it will be coordinating proposed tariffs with neighbouring landowner Forestry Land and Scotland to ‘ensure consistency’ and that they will ‘address user needs over length of stay’.

A full report is expected to be submitted to a special meeting of the council’s area committee in the coming weeks.

The scheme proposes to introduce Pay and Display parking on the C1126 Cairngorm ski road between The Reindeer Centre and the Hayfield car park.

Most of the rest of the road between Rothiemurchus Lodges’s access road junction to the Hayfield snow gates will be designated as no waiting at any time zones under the plans.

The exceptions are a loading bay by the Pine Marten cafe and a residents’ permit zone in front of the Glenmore houses.

Badenoch MSP Kate Forbes said: “The original proposals have been modified considerably, and whilst I understand the desire to get something in place ahead of the tourist season, it may be wiser to consult further.

“There will be a significant number of people affected, not least of all the local communities, and I feel it would be more helpful if the new measures can demonstrate they have widespread support.

“What is encouraging though, is the commitment that officers will be there to ensure enforcement – as a lack of resource for enforcement has been a roadblock to meaningful progress at other similar hotspots.”

A Highland Council spokesman said: “The changes in the proposals are a direct result of responding to registered objections and have been communicated to them.

“We do not require to re-advertise them as they are reductions in the impact of the original proposed order, however, we have detailed them on the consultation page.

“As a result of the changes to the proposals numerous objectors have withdrawn their objections.”

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