SHOPPERS will have another good reason to visit Woking this month.

On Saturdays during September, beginning tomorrow, visitors can pay for two hours’ parking in Victoria Place car park with a third hour free: the three hours will cost £3, against the usual £4.80.

There are further savings on stays of up to five hours: four hours will cost £4.50 (currently £6.40), and five hours £6 (£7.60). For six hours and beyond, the current rates will apply.

The scheme will operate in Victoria Place blue, green, red and yellow car parks.

“The trial has come out of what we’ve heard from residents and during our doorstep campaigning during the local election, that parking in Woking is expensive,” said Ann-Marie Barker, the Liberal Democrat leader of Woking Borough Council.

“We were determined to do something to help bring more trade not just to our excellent retail experience, but to our opportunities for leisure, dining, events and more.

“The town centre is vibrant, and we want people to take advantage of its attractions.”

The completion of Victoria Place included the opening of a range of new stores, including Marks & Spencer, Skechers, Moss Bros., Gail’s Bakery and, most recently, the national fitness brand, Gym Group. The town’s latest entertainment complex, Woking Superbowl, is set to open this month.

There will be even more to enjoy on Saturday with live music and kids’ funfair rides in Victoria Square, at the Victoria Way end of Commercial Way.

Victoria Place has more than 3,000 car parking spaces, featuring 78 electric charging bays, 80 disabled spaces, 54 parent and toddler parking bays and an exclusive M&S “click and collect” area.

“We’ll assess the trial as it goes along,” Cllr Barker added. “We need to move cautiously and find the right balance.

“Car parking income is important to the council, but so is encouraging people to come to Woking. We also want those who have come to Woking to stay longer.

“We have plenty of car parking data to hand, so along with feedback from the public we should be able to monitor the trial quickly and accurately, then we can decide whether to roll it on.”