07:49AM, Friday 13 September 2013
Parking charges are to be introduced at Dorney Lake.
From November, drivers will have to pay £2.50 to park up at the facility which was used to stage events at last year's Olympic Games.
The charges are being introduced following increased vandalism and littering and to help control the number of visitors which have risen dramatically in recent years.
The site, which is owned by Eton College, has operated an open gate policy since it opened in 2006.
But managing director of the Marsh Lane venue, Ivor Lloyd, said it was now time for a change.
"We needed to have some mechanism to handle increased traffic," he added.
"As we gained notoriety through international events and became more televised, that did put some more pressure on and a massive growth in visitors."
Dorney villagers have already been notified of the changes, which have been in the pipeline since 2010, through the Dorney Parish Council newsletter.
Signage at the car park is also due to be put up this month to notify regular users of the facility of the upcoming charges.
"We are giving people plenty of notice to get used to it," added Ivor.
"In order to keep the site good and control litter and all the other things people come to visit us for, car parking charges are just another step."
The new parking system, which has cost about £15,000 to install, will see a 'cashless' system introduced whereby payment can be made through either a mobile phone or through a credit or debit card.
The site will then by controlled by existing Dorney Lake staff with charges only applicable to casual visitors and not for those who have pre-booked events.
Revenue generated from the car park will be pumped back into the running of the site.
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