Scandalous (mini rant alert)

On Saturday I did some baking, as promised to myself, and I made a dozen white chocolate chip cookies, a dozen queen cakes (fairy cakes), and a yellow trifle. Then, before it got too dark too quickly I took the dog on a full circuit of one of our local parks.

On Sunday we headed off to Bretton Country Park for a 4-mile 2-hour walk in the country. Last time I went I mistakenly parked in the Yorkshire Sculpture Park where the parking fee was £4 (apx $6), and I didn’t want to make the same mistake.

I almost missed the car park (again!) as it was almost empty. When I found a fees board, I wasn’t surprised it was empty and at first thought it must be a joke and that there was another fees board somewhere else. There wasn’t. This little known country park in the middle of nowhere was charging £7.50 for 2 hours or more. Seven – Pounds – Fifty – Pence. (Apx $12.)

I was absolutely disgusted and I didn’t stay. Instead I headed back to that old faithful of ours, Scout Dyke, where parking is free – although I went prepared to pay at least a couple of quid for parking. The problem with Scout Dyke is that it’s less than 2 miles all the way around – or I think it is as it only takes us about 45 minutes to do the full circuit. But it was too late for me to go anywhere else as I wanted to finish our walk before it got too dark, and I do love Scout Dyke.

I’ve fired off emails this morning to both Wakefield Council and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park expressing my shock and disgust (because YSP seems to be managing the country park these days). YSP has tried to justify the fees by saying they need to raise money to keep the place open. Well, charging prohibitive car parking fees is NOT going to get the visitors across the threshold.

So far neither have had the decency to reply. So much for customer services.

Why not charge a realistic car park fee and a modest entrance fee for those wishing to visit the museum? Or do they charge the exhibitors? The café is already over-priced, so visitors take a picnic – read the signs, you stupid people.

I certainly won’t be going again until the fees are more fair, and I wish these attractions would stop penalising motorists, without whom they’d have no visitors anyway.


6 thoughts on “Scandalous (mini rant alert)

  1. Lucy Brown (@CharmedLassie) 19 November 2012 / 10:48 am

    Hmm! They feel like they have a captive audience, with buses being only once an hour or so (at least they were when my great aunt lived nearby). The trouble is, they don’t understand that people won’t do ‘anything’ to go somewhere: at some point it becomes both prohibitive and infuriating.

    The improvements they’ve done to YSP in the last few years have cost money. I understand that but, you’re right, they’re not going to recoup anything by over-charging. Trying to make Yorkshire the sculpture zone of the country is all well and good but if the only people you aim to attract are tourists then you won’t survive.

    I seem to have started ranting too!


    • Diane 19 November 2012 / 10:56 am

      I can’t even get a bus there direct, and with the dog it’s even more inconvenient to do so anyway. I honestly don’t know how they can justify this when they can’t even claim rising fuel prices for the car park. Again, the motorists are stumping up for that too.


  2. Morton Gray 19 November 2012 / 11:35 am

    I think some parking charges are riduculous. I go to Pershore in Worcestershire for a writing class on Fridays. If I parked on the car park it would cost me £4 and I would be in a rush to get back to the car. No wonder the roads are clogged up! Surely they should be encouraging people to park in little market towns not discouraging them. That’s my rant. Mx


    • Diane 19 November 2012 / 1:49 pm

      £4 for just a couple of hours is ridiculous. It’s all ridiculous.


  3. quo 19 November 2012 / 1:06 pm

    In this current economic climate, these charges are exhorbitant, indeed the last person that did this type of thing was hanged, his name was Dick Turpin! The people around the area will not be attracted to the parks and exhibitions, and people further afield will be put off by these prices…..yet again a little power in the wrong hands will lead to policies that defy logic and any type of justification!!


    • Diane 19 November 2012 / 1:50 pm

      Very eloquently put! 🙂


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