Plans to install ANPR cameras for a new parking system at a Lichfield supermarket have been approved.

The Tesco supermarket in Lichfield. Picture: Google Streetview

Tesco has unveiled proposals to ensure drivers using the car park at its Church Street store are spending at least £5 in the shop.

The new system would see customers given a voucher at the till to use on terminals to validate their vehicle.

A statement supporting the proposal says shoppers using the supermarket are unable to find spaces because people heading into the city centre are using the facility.

“Tesco are finding that their car park is coming under considerable pressure and is being used by non-Tesco customers.

“This is limiting the number of spaces available to shoppers, detracting from the attractiveness of the store as a main food shopping location, and in turn impacting on its trading performance.

“Tesco therefore propose to introduce new measures to control the car park whereby customers will be permitted to stay for up to three hours if they spend a minimum of £5 in store.”

Planning statement

The scheme will see those who stay beyond three hours or who do not validate their parking tickets issued with a penalty charge of £70, reduced to £42 if paid within 14 days.

Stays of 30 minutes or less will not be charged to allow pick up and drop off journeys.

“The revised controls will ensure that there is a greater turnover of parking to create more freely available spaces for shoppers to visit both the store and shops located within the city centre.

“For example, a customer may undertake a half-hour shop at the Tesco store where they spend more than the £5, and remain with the car park for a further two and a half hours.

“We consider that the revised parking controls are sufficient to allow linked trips with other city centre uses, especially on the basis that its main purpose is to serve the Tesco store.”

Planning statement

No date has been confirmed for when the new system will be introduced.

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24 Comments

  1. This is another example of a large company not really understanding what people are going through at present. These charges are the wrong thing to do at the wrong time.
    I am sure the council will say it has no option but to approve the plans, but it would be good to see someone make a stand for once. The roadmap introduced by the Prime Minister does not signal an end to the pandemic and the impact it will have. We are going to struggle for the next 12 months to restore some form of “normal” life for the majority of people. Any help we can get is welcome. Extra expenditure and worry is unwelcome.

  2. Having been ensnared by these camera systems in the past, and the inconvenience of having to queue to enter your details, it will probably make Tesco less attractive for me. The similar set up at Queens hospital in Burton is a nightmare. I am sure the loss will be more than any gain to them. While Tesco might use some discretionary powers, the car parking companies will not. Dealing with their Draconian attitude for a minor mistake like entering your car registration slightly wrong can be dispiriting and costly, and very time consuming!

  3. Sayonara Tesco – you’ll get no more custom from me after this rapacious & uncivic move. And in the middle of the worst crisis in our country since the War to boot.
    Shame on Tesco for asking for this, & shame on councillors for agreeing to it – but shame seems in very short supply these days.

  4. Great way to deter people from returning to the high street once things open up again. I’d quite often buy something from Tesco after using their car park to pop into town, won’t bother if I have to spend £5 every time. Rather just drive to the Tamworth retail park instead if Lichfield has no free parking option.

  5. If people wish to stop this controlling big – brother technology, just stop shopping there when it is introduced. They will soon revert. Of course the problem would be solved by one hour free parking everywhere in the locale.

  6. Well, I think Tesco, you’ve gone and shot yourself in the foot here!
    I, for one, won’t be ‘popping in’ to grab extra milk and bread and may well change my weekly shop to one of the many, other supermarkets we have in Lichfield!
    And of course this council agreed to it….they’ve not got a clue!
    Shame on you!

  7. This has happened all over the country, not just Tesco but Sainsburys Morrisons & Asda too over last approx 5 years. It is “not a public use car park but a customer use one” was the local radio & tv news comment in Carlisle & Areas of Kent.

  8. so am I understanding this system correctly – the only way to ‘pay’ for Tesco parking is to validate a ticket instore after spending £5.00? you can’t just park and pay a fee? What happens if what you want to buy instore is out of stock?
    People also use Tesco carpark as an overspill from Greenhill Health Centre (if and when we get to visit a Dr again)
    It will certainly make the £1 an hour city carparks seem a bargain!

  9. What appears to have been forgotten is that there was an agreement when they redeveloped Tesco and took the old car park away that Tesco would allow people to still use their car park so that it didn’t effect the town centre. Time’s passed and now it is just another example of how how out of touch big companies are with communities , an already under threat high street probably just took another kidney punch!

  10. A return trip from Tesco Lichfield to Ventura Retail Park, Tamworth takes 42 minutes (longer on a weekend afternoon) and is 18 miles, which is approximately £2.90 in fuel plus other wear and tear.

  11. Cant see the problem
    It is clearly tesco car par, at no point does it say City centre parking, or free parking for the city, tesco paid for it, and people abuse it, and if people read what was said, parking is free for people shopping there. Just validate your ticket, not tescos fault if you a too mean to pay for parking in and around town

  12. If you drop someone off you’ve got half an hour to do so for free.
    If you park for 3 hours you can pop into town for £1.67 an hour if you buy your lunch and some milk…what’s bad about that? It’s Tesco land, their car park, I don’t understand this problem, really. If you want to drive into town, pay parking rather than Tesco free parking, this happens literally everywhere else.
    I’m surprised at the comments here…pay your way and use the shop who owns the car park or go elsewhere…isn’t that the most reasonable thing?
    Lichfield residents, wake up – this is absolutely normal business everywhere else I’ve ever been. One better thing they could’ve done might’ve been to have a pay & display car park where you get a ticket regardless. Once you’ve shopped in Tesco you get your ticket refunded at the till. However, it’s their land & can do what they want…capitalist Tory Lichfield, surely that’s what’s expected from this Tory regime.
    Can’t believe the comments here, so very selfish.

  13. I like many others will no longer pop into Tesco’s for something. The risk of agro from the parking company is just too great. I can’t be bothered with setting a stopwatch running when I enter the car park if I’m popping into the centre of Lichfield.

    The way the car parking companies handle queries is scandalous. Most likely they are paying Tesco to install the system as well.

    The claims made in the application were spurious. When is there never a space in that car park? Only at Christmas, and then what happens when you try to enter can’t find a space and leave, can easily take more than 30 minutes.

    Only one way to deal with this and vote with our feet (or cars) and use one of of the other good supermarkets in Lichfield instead.

  14. When Tesco rebuilt the new store I thought free parking was part of the plans and this is why the council and local people agreed, together with affordable housing and green space?

  15. I’m surprised people can be bothered with the god awful traffic light system, and the joining petrol station, Aldi exit.

    I agree with others, this used to be multi-use parking, I don’t know if Tesco offered to retain a portion of it when they redeveloped the land?

  16. Just pull over and obscure part of your car number plate with a crisp packet, piece of tape or a piece of paper before entering the car park. Oops it must have blown up off the road. The ANPR camera won’t be able to detect you and you can park as long as you like.

  17. How do Tesco even measure whether people are using the car park to go into town, rather than shop in the store?

    How is it possible to measure that, with any accuracy?

  18. I found it hard to justify using
    Tesco anyway, given their very dubious planning practices and policies.

    This will be the push I need to shop elsewhere.

  19. Clive, Tesco have just announced a profit warning because of your comments. They are hugely concerned that a man too mean to pay for a few hours parking will no longer use one of their stores. Honestly the state of some of the comments on here. People who can afford to drive can surely afford to pay to park on what is in all fairness private land that is maintained and insured at the owners costs. If owned a shop and people kept using the parking spaces but not buying from my store I would also introduce a parking charge. I can’t see why people are getting so worked up about this. It is literally already happening in pretty much every other town in the UK.

  20. Tesco need to get the often gridlocked traffic situation sorted. For over 10 years the traffic light sensors have been in the wrong place, requiring drivers to partially cross the white line to trigger the light changing – stop behind the line and you are left waiting for ages. Tesco have always blamed the Highways Agency for an incorrect installation but ultimately the design was in the original Tesco plans.

    If you want people to start paying and using the store .. at least let them leave.

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