Waltham Forest Council agrees motion to help small businesses by reviewing parking

WALTHAM FOREST: Free parking at Christmas to help small business, council leader says

Businessman Ajaib Hussain wants these charges scrapped

Cab driver Yasir Rana says his business has been suffering from parking charges

A parking inspector checks cars parked in bays near local shops

Traders say businesses have suffered since the council introduced parking bay charges near shops

First published in News by

SMALL businesses could be given a helping hand by the council which is considering making parking free at Christmas and easing parking restrictions.

Council leader Chris Robbins made the announcement at a full council meeting last night that the council is considering making it's four municipal car parks free for shoppers in the run up to Christmas to help struggling businesses.

The announcement followed the Conservatives call for the council to do all it can to help local businesses during the recession by temporarily easing parking restrictions.

The call comes after a number of complaints from traders that their businesses are struggling since the introduction of parking permits in bays near town centre shops.

Bill Hunt, owner of a Hoe Street garage, spoke at the Town Hall meeting on behalf of local businesses asking the council to help after his business has been hit by a 200 per cent increase in the cost of parking permits.

Conservative Cllr Alan Siggers, who put forward the motion that was unanimously agreed, said: “If you want to buy a loaf of bread, it takes you longer to buy a scratch and sniff card for parking and put it in your car than it takes to buy the bread.”

Conservative Cllr Edwin Northover, who seconded the motion, said that he had received a parking ticket while stopping for a few minutes to buy a sausage roll at Percy Ingle's bakery.

He said: “We need to be grown up about this and realise that businesses are struggling. We need to support them and put this before the the coffers of Waltham Forest.”

Small business owners have welcomed the council's pledge, but said they want to see the parking permits near shops scrapped permanently.

Ajaib Hussain, 40, owner of a Leytonstone High Road laundry, said many of his customers need to stop for just a couple of minutes to drop or collect items and sometimes get fined while buying a parking voucher.

He said: “It has really affected by business. I think easing the parking charges would really help because it is a big problem for us.”

Yasir Rana, 38, has been a mini cab driver for ten years in Leytonstone and said it is harder than it has ever been because of parking charges.

He said: “They seem to be robbing cab drivers from every corner because I have to pay for a licence and road tax already.

“I have a disabled person with me today and she only wants to stop for maybe 30 minutes, but I have to pass on the cost of the parking and she will complain. It should be free near the shops. They should be trying to help us.”

Comments (4)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:05pm Fri 23 Oct 09

Campanologist Cycling Epping says...

This is OK for motorists but is any provision being made for cyclists in the form of improved and cleaner lanes and security facilities?
This is OK for motorists but is any provision being made for cyclists in the form of improved and cleaner lanes and security facilities? Campanologist Cycling Epping
  • Score: 0

4:29pm Fri 23 Oct 09

mdj says...

Since the parking bays are being surveyed frequently by enforcement staff, it is perfectly simple to say that the first 15 minutes of parking are free. 90% of grievances would disappear.
Interesting that Cllrs only listen when they feel an election approaching: perhaps an argument for annual elections for 25% of Councillors?
Since the parking bays are being surveyed frequently by enforcement staff, it is perfectly simple to say that the first 15 minutes of parking are free. 90% of grievances would disappear. Interesting that Cllrs only listen when they feel an election approaching: perhaps an argument for annual elections for 25% of Councillors? mdj
  • Score: 0

11:01am Sat 24 Oct 09

Techno2 says...

Too little too late. The market in Walthamstow is shrinking by the week.

The council should institute free parking for the length of the recession, lower the pitch fees for market traders, reduce the business rates for independent local (non-chain) businesses and provide micro finance and accessible training for people who want to learn how to set up the small businesses which will regenerate the High Street an dother shopping streets in the borough.
Too little too late. The market in Walthamstow is shrinking by the week. The council should institute free parking for the length of the recession, lower the pitch fees for market traders, reduce the business rates for independent local (non-chain) businesses and provide micro finance and accessible training for people who want to learn how to set up the small businesses which will regenerate the High Street an dother shopping streets in the borough. Techno2
  • Score: 0

6:41pm Mon 26 Oct 09

Janet1 says...

Excellent ideas from Mdj and Techno2. But why do these suggestions have to come from posts to the newspaper? Why isn't the council itself doing something?

I hate to see our famous market shrinking away. Part of the High Street's decline is caused by deliberate council policies, such as punitive charges and reduction in cleaning. Some just stems from council neglect and failure to care about Walthamstow's many assets.

The decline in the High Street could start being reversed tomorrow if the council would just start caring about it.
Excellent ideas from Mdj and Techno2. But why do these suggestions have to come from posts to the newspaper? Why isn't the council itself doing something? I hate to see our famous market shrinking away. Part of the High Street's decline is caused by deliberate council policies, such as punitive charges and reduction in cleaning. Some just stems from council neglect and failure to care about Walthamstow's many assets. The decline in the High Street could start being reversed tomorrow if the council would just start caring about it. Janet1
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree