Julie Patten hit the nail squarely on the head (Letters, March 1, 'Kendal is now full up'). Massive traffic congestion regularly brings this beautiful town to a mighty frustrating standstill, especially in summer when tourism peaks.

Year by year it gets progressively worse and, without drastic action, it will have a most severe economic effect and deter people from visiting the place.

South Lakeland District Council has had much stinging criticism for the decision to close New Road car park and there are clearly strong opinions on both sides of this most controversial divide.

Nevertheless, however inconvenient this closure may be in the short term, the potential long-term benefits to the town are enormous.

Rather than continuing to fret over the loss of relatively few central parking spaces, let us rather grasp the opportunity to build a large park and ride facility, near Plumgarths roundabout, which would be entirely free for local businesses and those with a CA or LA postcode. Others would be charged a realistic, yet affordable, fee to park and ride unhindered into town, taking no more than five minutes.

In many other popular and congested places, such as York, Bath and Durham, the park and rid schemes work exceptionally well, making it easier, less frustrating and more convenient to access town and city centres. Such schemes also remove the problem of on-street parking and facilitate more rapid public transport throughout the town or city centres.

Future generations of Kendalians would thank and applaud us for having had the foresight to re-claim and landscape this wonderful and central riverside location, so long blighted by unsightly vehicles and obscuring views of the River Kent.

Let us look beyond the ends of our noses!

Jonathan Ward