Tuesday, December 11, 2018

How parking charges damage small town High Streets - real time evidence emerging from Angus after one month of parking charges.

On the 1st of November Angus Council started parking charges in Arbroath, Montrose, Brechin, Forfar and Kerriemuir. The real time evidence that ABRA (Angus Business and Reatail Association) is amassing is a stark warning for Nairn if Highland Council go ahead and implement parking charges here.

In 2019 Nairn town centre businesses will be hit with a double whammy too as Sainsbury's will effectively become a retail park, with another store next door and  a McDonalds too complete with free parking for all. Nothing against other businesses up there  folks but hey let's have a parking level playing field for the folks in the High Street please! Remember that the organisation that gave planning permission for that development will also be the one that puts in parking charges to the town centre - more joined up thinking from Highland Council?

There is evidence of a drop in takings (83% of respondents to the survey report a drop in trade and nine businesses had paid stoff off already), reduced hours of business opening and staff lay-offs. See more details in the image below. The businesses affected are fighting a spirited campaign to get the parking meters taken away but, so far, it looks like Angus Council are not shifting from their strategy. More indications that Nairn business have to become more proactive and come out fighting now as it is a lot harder to stop the meters once they are in. More details of the ABRA campaign against parking charges on their Facebook page here. 

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