Controversial parking measures for Marlow’s town centre should be replaced with ‘parking clocks’, the town council has said.

Bucks County Council (BCC) is being urged to rethink its plans to introduce pay-and-display meters in the High Street and surrounding roads by giving out the discs, which it says are already being used in Harrogate, Carlisle and Scarborough, to residents and visitors.

The clocks, which the town council has offered to get, would be set by drivers when parking in the busy roads and displayed in their windscreens so enforcement officers can see what time the car was parked.

Town mayor Jocelyn Towns, who has been leading the fight against the proposals, said: “We know this can work.

“The idea will solve one of BCC’s major issues with Marlow’s parking system, which is the difficulty and complexity of dealing with overstay parkers.

“The system could be implemented at virtually zero cost to the tax payer and it could be put in place very quickly, and create an instant payback.”

Retailers would be encouraged to give out the discs to visitors and they would be made available to residents.

The town council said it believed the system would “immediately solve” the issue of enforcement and “remove any justification for parking meters”.

Cllr Towns added: “We would encourage BCC to adopt this proposal as soon as possible.

“It seems like a win-win for all concerned.”

The town council, in conjunction with Marlow Chamber of Commerce and the Marlow Society, has sent a request to BCC’s deputy leader and cabinet member for transportation, Mark Shaw, who has reportedly agreed to look into the option.

Transport for Bucks spokesman Dave Robert, network congestion manager, said: “The county council fully recognises the potential challenges of ticket machines and are constantly looking for alternative solutions to reduce the impact of parking management on the street environment.

“We welcome the town council’s observations regarding the disc system and are happy to look at this in more detail as a potential tool in dealing with the issue of overstay parking in Marlow.

“However, in developing the current proposals, we looked at this idea and though it is well used in some areas it is not without problems, particularly compared to using pay and display machines with a free parking period to achieve similar control.

“For example, whilst Scarborough has largely reported a positive experience with disc parking, it does cost them around £14,000 a year to administer and print the discs.

“Residents tend to re-use the discs many times, but visitors tend to take them away, meaning new ones need to be printed.

“The scheme can also be open to abuse as the ‘clock’ can be manually re-set.

“To avoid this can be quite resource intensive, as the enforcement officer must record the details of each vehicle, except where the disc has clearly expired.

“The current consultation has now ended, and we are now analysing the large number of responses received.

“We would like to thank all of those residents, visitors and businesses in Marlow who have taken the time to let us know their views.

“These will all be taken into account before the decision on how to proceed will be taken.”