Parking space in St Ives sells for £55,000


Parking is a premium in any town centre but in St Ives – the idyllic Cornish resort once home to Britain's artistic elite – a single space has just fetched £55,000.

The figure, more than twice the average salary in Cornwall, has been offered for a space in Tregenna Hill, according to estate agent Paul Le Bas. Such is the demand for parking spots among wealthy visitors that a "dog fight" breaks out as soon one becomes available, he added – pushing the price up from £24,000 just five years ago.

"Just put it on the internet, ring round everyone that you have on the list and normally it's a dog fight after that. It's quite entertaining," Mr Le Bas, of Miller and Sons St Ives branch, told BBC Cornwall.

Between 1928 and 1939 the former fishing village was home to artists such as Alfred Wallis, Ben Nicholson and Barbara Hepworth. Now thousands visit the town's Tate Gallery and increasing numbers of holiday homes are being bought.

Councillor Colin Nicholls, deputy mayor of St Ives, said: "There's only a certain type of person that wants to pay all that, but it seems to me like a dinner party accessory." Jerry Harper, director of property developers, Trelyon Estate Limited, said buyers were usually second home owners. "They do not want to spend hours driving around St Ives looking for a parking space," he said.