COACH drivers have been opting not to park in Barry Island’s car parks, with reports that council charges are a deterrent.

One Barry Island resident reported around 15 coaches had parked up on Breaksea Drive, with a driver telling him the £10 a day Vale Council charge was a deterrent.

Former Barry Island Pleasure Park co-owner John Collins previously operated a policy whereby drivers were provided with free facilities.

Pride In Barry chairman, Paul Haley, said: “We should not only not charge coach drivers, but should provide a free rest room and tea and coffee. We want them to feel very welcome on Barry Island, and bring regular trips here. We are competing for their business and we should make our offer enticing.”

Vale Council operational manager highways and engineering, Michael Clogg, said: “Similar to cars and other vehicles, buses and coaches can park for up to two hours on Breaksea Drive. Charges for off street coach parking have been in place at Barry Island for many years. The car park at Nell’s Point has been charging for coaches to park since it was opened and for several years previous to that charges were made for coach parking at Harbour Road car park.”

A Vale Council spokesman, responding to a Barry & District News query about whether fines had recently been issued to coach drivers, said: “The Penalty Charge Notices issued do not differentiate between a car, bus, van or other vehicle – they only record the number plate – so we are unable to give you a definite answer on that. We can, however, say for certain that we have received no complaints from coach operators about the charges in place at Barry Island.”