Increasing discretionary fees and charges at above inflation rates – including entrance to Scolton Manor –  could net cash-strapped Pembrokeshire nearly £50,000 a year, senior members of the council heard.

At the March meeting of the council’s Cabinet members considered a report listing increased fees and yields for land charges, highways searches, street naming and numbering, street works licences, highways charges and admission to Scolton Manor House near Haverfordwest.

The proposals follow a public consultation that took place in January and February of this year.

Proposals for new Withybush Airport fees and charges will be presented to Cabinet in April.

A report for Cabinet members said:“Fees and charges are a large contributor to the Authority’s projected income stream for 2023-24, with circa £13.5m coming in from discretionary fees and charges and circa £14.1m from statutory fees and charges.

“Services are now looking to increase well above inflation as in some cases fees have not been increased, even by inflation, for many years. During these tough times it is imperative that services look at their fees and charges annually and make at least inflationary increases in line with the budget strategy.”

Pembrokeshire currently has 71 areas which charge for services, with over 1,500 separate fees and charges. Some of these are either statutory fees or are fees set by other bodies.

Full costs are not being recovered in the majority of cases in the discretionary areas, the report said.

It was recommended the entry charges to Scolton Manor House increase from £3.50-£5,50 for adults, from £2.35-£450 for concessions/seniors, from £2.35-£3.25 for children, with family tickets rising from £9.35-£15.

This is expected to net up to £5,000 a year.

Members unanimously backed the increases, with Councillor Michelle Bateman pointing out that the Scolton Manor charges related to accessing the house itself rather than visiting the site.