Car parking charges at Thruscross, Swinsty and Fewston reservoirs are set to start early next year, it has been confirmed.

Yorkshire Water says the installation of equipment at its sites was due to start at Swinsty Moor car park on Monday (November 13), followed by Swinsty Stack Point; at Fewston, Blubberhouses and Thruscross.

People will be charged £1 to park for an hour, £2 for two hours, £3 for six hours, and £5 to park all day. Parking will remain free for blue badge holders. There will also be an annual pass of £30 for all four car parks.

The charges will begin in early 2024 and will be reinvested across Yorkshire Water’s sites to deliver nature conservation, countryside management and improvement of facilities at reservoir sites, says the company.

The money will also contribute towards the first ever in-house Yorkshire Water ranger team, which includes nine area rangers to ensure visitors have 'a positive experience on site, complete maintenance and engage with visitors across the sites.

A spokesperson for Yorkshire Water said: “We know how important our sites are to local communities and visitors alike. We have thought long and hard about the way people use our sites before implementing this trial, as well as considering approaches at similar sites around the country. We believe a small parking fee and increased security will help to dissuade anti-social behaviour, such as fly-tipping, at our sites but also have a long-term positive impact in terms of the projects we can deliver in the future.

“Our brand-new, in-house ranger team will be supported as a direct result of introducing these charges and we have a wide range of exciting conservation, community and facilities enhancements lined up for the future.

“We will be collaborating with local authorities and local stakeholders to ensure the introduction of these tariffs in 2024 causes minimal disruption and will be working hard to ensure all our visitors are aware of the charges before they arrive at our sites.”

Bransby Wilson Parking Solutions has been selected to operate the parking meters. ANPR cameras will be installed at the sites and visitors will be able to pay via card payment on site, the Ring Go app and by telephone. Visitors without means to pay with them can call the phoneline later in the day to pay.