NEW parking charges are set to be introduced in Burnley town centre - with motorists paying short visits bearing the brunt.

Short-stay car parks see the one-hour and under fee rise from 80p to 90p, and the one to two hours charge increase from £1.40 to £1.50.

And parking for more than three hours will attract a charge of £5.50, instead of £5.00.

But the two to three hours banding, for £2, will remain the same.

Coun Mark Townsend, resources cabinet member for the Labour-controlled authority, said at a recent council meeting that the move was designed to stimulate footfall in the high street.

“We have been trying to get people to stay longer in the town centre so we have tried to spread the cost out,” he said.

But opposition Liberal Democrats claimed that freezing the car parking charges completely was a better stimulus to encourage shoppers into Burnley.

Deputy leader Coun Margaret Lishman said that the administration had already left a ‘trail of broken promises’ with its spending plans.

Single visits to the Finsley Gate No. 2 and Centenary Way car parks will increase from £3.50 to £3.70.

Park users will also be hit by the shake-up. The Towneley Hall, Riverside and Barwise car parks are currently chargeable between 10am and 5pm.

But the hours have been altered so it is now 8am to 10pm. All of the charges will come into force from Friday.