Plans have been revealed for a new public car park in a tourist hotspot that has been plagued by parking problems.

The organisers of the annual Keswick Convention have revealed proposals to operate a car park on their Skiddaw Street site.

It is hoped the 73-space car park will be up and running in the autumn.

The site currently hosts the main tent for the annual Christian convention, which attracts an estimate 12,000 to 15,000 people to the town over three weeks each summer.

Keswick Ministries, the charity which runs the event, is in the process of redeveloping the town's former pencil factory, at Southey Works, to create a single integrated site for the future conventions, taking in the neighbouring Rawnsley Hall site.

This year is due to see the last event for which the main tent is based at Skiddaw Street, as a new marquee is due to be put up at the pencil factory site for the 2020 event.

The charity has applied for planning permission to operate a public car park on the Skiddaw Street site and hopes to have it up and running this autumn.

The existing convention centre building at the Skiddaw Street site will be retained by the charity, which plans to continue using it for volunteer accommodation, and to host visiting church and school groups, for some years.

David Sawday, chief operating officer for Keswick Ministries, said: “We know this move will be welcomed by residents, guest house owners and visitors in this part of Keswick.

“There is a shortage of parking places in the surrounding area of the town and opening up our Skiddaw Street site will provide a popular option for motorists.

“Over the last year we have received a number of representations from townsfolk on

whether our site could be used for public car parking.

“We believe that making this space available will be of great benefit to the town. It also aligns with our policy of letting our flat standing areas for parking outside convention time, as we currently do at our Rawnsley and pencil factory sites.

"Car parking is in short supply in Keswick and we are happy to help where we can.”

The plans are being considered by the Lake District National Park Authority.

Keswick Ministries is in discussion with Allerdale council and other providers of car parking management.

There have been called for better parking provision in Keswick for many years.

In peak tourist season in particular the town's existing car parks can quickly fill up, pushing visitors onto residential streets with no parking restrictions, which in turn can make it hard for locals to park their vehicles.