Visitors to dozens of council-owned car parks in County Durham will have to pay for parking after 2pm from next year. 

Durham County Council has announced the current scheme will finish on December 31, with all-day charges coming into force from January 1, 2024. 

Car parks in Durham City, Chester-le-Street, Bishop Auckland, Barnard Castle and Spennymoor are all affected. 

The local authority has also recently consulted residents on introducing parking charges at sites along the East Durham coast, at Seaham and Crimdon. 

The local authority says the new charges will provide another income stream.

Dave Lewin, Durham County Council’s strategic traffic manager, said: “The free after 2pm parking offer was originally introduced in April 2021 as part of a package of temporary measures aimed at supporting residents and businesses in recovering from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

“The offer ended in on-street parking bays in Durham City from April 1 this year and charging after 2pm will be reinstated in all council-run off-street car parks across the county from January 1.

"Parking charges can help increase turnover of spaces, lower emissions and improve air quality. We also encourage people to use public transport or park and ride facilities when visiting the county’s centres.”

Full list of car parks affected: 


The Sands multi-storey

Providence Row




Civic Centre

Lucy Street

North Burns

Wilfred Street

Cricket Club

Foundry Lane

St. Mary's

Cone Terrace

Burns Green



Osbourne Road

Middle Chare

Low Chare

Youth Centre

Leisure Centre

Barnard Castle

Queen Street (Hole in the Wall)



Cambridge Street

Clarence Street

Dickens Street


Merrington View

Rosa Street (including Edward Street, Vyner Street and Flora Street)

Bishop Auckland 


Kingsway (Castle Chare)

South Terrace

Tenters Street

Train Station


Kingsway/South Church Road

Victoria Avenue