Welsh council parking ‘profits’ nudge higher10 Nov 2017

Surplus up 1.4% year-on-year

Local authorities in Wales made a combined surplus – or ‘profit’ – of £14 million on their parking activities in the last financial year.

The figure for 2016-17 was 1.4% higher than the £13.8 million surplus made in 2015-16.

The rise was the fourth consecutive annual increase.

Between them, the 22 councils in Wales had parking income of £37.4 million in 2016-17, 4.5% higher than the previous financial year.

Income includes on- and off-street parking charges and penalty charges.

Total expenditure on running parking activities was £23.4 million, a 6.4% increase on the previous financial year.

The total surplus is the difference between the income and expenditure figures.

Table 1: Welsh council parking accounts summary 2016-17

 

 

 £million

2012-13

2013-4

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

Change 2016-17 on

2015-16

Parking

 

 

Income

30.4

32.3

33.9

35.8

37.4

4.5%

Expenditure

21.8

22.5

21.8

22.0

23.4

6.4%

Surplus

8.7

9.8

12.1

13.8

14.0

1.4%

 

The data analysed for the RAC Foundation by David Leibling comes from the official returns made in a standardised format to the Welsh Government on an annual basis.

Looked at individually, 19 of the 22 councils showed surpluses. 

(Full table of councils follows below.)

The biggest ‘profit’ was made by Cardiff (£3.66 million), followed by Swansea (£2.47 million) and then Gwynedd (£1.36 million).

Three councils reported losses on their parking activities: Blaenau Gwent (£836,000), Flintshire (£127,000), and Torfaen (£72,000).

These were the same three which reported losses in the previous financial year.

Table 2: Welsh councils ranked by level of 2016-17 parking surplus in thousands of pounds

 

 

 

SURPLUS

% change in surplus 2016-17

on

2015-16

% change in deficit 2016-17

on

2015-16

 

 £’000

2012-13

2013-14

2014-15

2015-16

2016-17

1

Cardiff

 2,586

2,924

 3,426

 3,494

 3,658

5%

 

2

Swansea

 1,256

 1,256

 1,951

 2,402

 2,467

3%

 

3

Gwynedd

804

797

 927

 1,408

 1,355

-4%

 

4

Carmarthenshire

487

795

 790

 1,394

 1,328

-5%

 

5

Conwy

560

580

 659

 1,058

 1,019

-4%

 

6

Monmouthshire

461

585

 741

 931

 929

0%

 

7

Powys

358

436

 616

 839

 895

7%

 

8

Denbighshire

677

541

 484

 458

 658

44%

 

9

Pembrokeshire

264

376

 492

 583

 597

2%

 

10

Rhondda Cynon Taf

478

393

 545

 497

 531

7%

 

11

Ceredigion

287

278

 325

 16

 520

3178%

 

12

Bridgend

300

496

 111

 232

 295

27%

 

13

Isle of Anglesey

 55

 85

 157

 186

 247

33%

 

14

Wrexham

240

– 149

 465

 316

 136

-57%

 

15

Vale of Glamorgan

– 238

 53

 151

 108

 132

22%

 

16

Neath Port Talbot

247

245

 186

 208

 118

-43%

 

17

Merthyr Tydfil

340

201

 93

 171

 104

-39%

 

18

Caerphilly

162

211

 198

 190

 17

-91%

 

19

Newport

– 206

 16

 65

 137

 9

-93%

 

20

Torfaen

– 39

– 68

– 51

– 81

– 72

 

-11%

21

Flintshire

– 100

– 511

-8

– 423

– 127

 

-70%

22

Blaenau Gwent

– 311

– 244

– 223

– 310

– 836

 

169%

 

Total

 8,668

 9,296

 12,100

 13,814

 13,979

 

 

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said:

“The latest data shows there have been above-inflation increases in both council-parking income and expenditure across Wales. This has led to a relatively small rise in overall profits.

“Unsurprisingly the big numbers are associated with Cardiff and Swansea and underline the high demand for spaces in larger cities with more traffic to regulate.

“Places like Cardiff will not only be attracting local people but guests from around the country and beyond, so it is important that policy makers balance the management of congestion through parking charges with the need to make the city accessible and affordable for first-time and returning visitors.

“We were pleased to see it reported this week that Cardiff Council has invested in 3,300 parking bay sensors which link to an app that drivers can use to help locate free spaces.” 

Contact:

Philip Gomm – Head of External Communications – RAC Foundation

philip.gomm@racfoundation.org | 020 7747 3445 | 07711 776448 | 020 7389 0601 (ISDN)

Notes to editors:

The RAC Foundation is a transport policy and research organisation that explores the economic, mobility, safety and environmental issues relating to roads and their users.

The Foundation publishes independent and authoritative research with which it promotes informed debate and advocates policy in the interest of the responsible motorist. All the Foundation’s work is available at: www.racfoundation.org    

Due to the rounding of values, calculations may not sum-up exactly.

The full report by David Leibling is available to download under embargo:

www.racfoundation.org/assets/rac_foundation/content/downloadables/Local_authority_parking_finances_Wales_2016-17_final_report.pdf

This week it was reported that Cardiff has installed 3,300 sensors in parking bays which link to an app which helps drivers locate spaces that are free:

https://www.transport-network.co.uk/Cardiff-launches-new-smart-parking-app/14592