North Devon Council is offering an extra two hours of free parking in its town centre car parks during lockdown.

The council has announced six of its car parks will now be free from 4pm in a bid to encourage shoppers to use local independent traders for click and collect services.

The two hours of extra parking will be available in Barnstaple’s Cattle Market, Tuly Street, Queen Street and Bear Street car parks, as well as Wilder Road in Ilfracombe and South Molton Central.

Charges remain in force in all other council car parks in North Devon, and between 8am and 4pm in the car parks mentioned.

NDC leader, Councillor David Worden, said: “Councillors have agreed to allow a set period of free parking at a designated time to support local businesses during the second period of lockdown.

“This will help customers to make use of click and collect and other services so people can continue to support their local high street.

“During this second period of lockdown, many of our local businesses remain open, if they are essential, or are offering online services. Please continue to support them whenever you can during these difficult times, even if you aren’t able to visit in person.”

The council is compiling a lockdown shopping directory of independent businesses who are remaining open or offering alternative ways to shop.

Local businesses are asked to email communications@northdevon.gov.uk, should they wish to be included in the directory.