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Motorists using conkers to pay parking charges

A scheme devised to allow motorists to pay for their parking using conkers is to be extended.

The scheme – which is running in three city centre car parks located in Leeds and Manchester – first began on Monday last week and has received 1,500 conkers from motorists. The conkers are worth a total of £300 in parking charges.

Town Centre Car Parks (TCCP) told the BBC that the environmentally-friendly scheme was devised in a bid to offset some of the emissions released by motorists as they drove to the car park.

Motorists can collect the conkers – which are 'valued' at 20 pence each - and can then exchange them for parking at the car parks up to a value of £10. All conkers will then be donated to Hetchell Wood Nature Reserve in Leeds.

TCCP's Ben Ziff, told the news source: "I was looking at our figures on what we have taken on conkers and it seems to be quite high, a lot more than we were expecting. Initially we were only going to run it for a week, but we're now definitely planning on extending the scheme.”

Meanwhile, Jonathan Leadley, from Yorkshire Wildlife Trust said: “Conkers used to be a central part of kids' autumns. This has sadly declined along with our connection with nature. This fantastic, but slightly bonkers idea will raise the profile of Yorkshire Wildlife Trust's wonderful woodlands and hopefully raise a bit of cash to help us look after them.”

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