Northampton business improvement district asks county council for meeting over proposed on-street charges

Terry Steers of St Giles' Ale House says the council can't see the problem going on in front of their own eyes.
Terry Steers of St Giles' Ale House says the council can't see the problem going on in front of their own eyes.

Northampton town centre BID has asked Northamptonshire County Council for a meeting with concerned business owners during the on-street parking consultation period.

Businesses in Northampton have widely criticised new parking proposals, this time by Northamptonshire County Council, to increase on-street parking from £1.20 per hour to £2.

Parking prices for the bays in Abington Street are set to increase.

Parking prices for the bays in Abington Street are set to increase.

READ MORE: 'Parking hike will be the last straw' - Business owners criticise plans for new Northampton on-street parking charges

Northampton town centre BID operations manager, Mark Mullen said: “The BID is aware that businesses have concerns about aspects of Northamptonshire County Council’s on-street parking consultation proposals.

“The BID has therefore requested that the council host a meeting for the businesses in the town centre so that the businesses can discuss their concerns and give their feedback direct to the decision-makers.

"A date for this to take place within the consultation period is due to be confirmed soon.”

Since last June, fees are proposed to go up by 100 per cent in St Giles Street by 2 an hour.

Since last June, fees are proposed to go up by 100 per cent in St Giles Street by 2 an hour.

Barber Antony Sèas, owner of Andrew’s Salon in St Giles Street, said: “The life of a small business owner in Northampton town centre no longer provides a sustainable livelihood.

“Footfall continues to decline faster than the national average and shoppers continue to be driven away by restrictions on parking, rising charges, fewer spaces and less buses.

"Small businesses are struggling enough as it is, however, the council seem intent on killing off the town centre altogether and driving out small businesses.

“The cost of parking has doubled since June 2018 to park on the streets mentioned.

"How can the council justify the reasoning for a further increase when the town centre shows a steady decline?

“This will further discourage people from coming into the town centre. As for small businesses, more will decide to close.”

The Chronicle & Echo are inviting readers to have their say on the consultation plans by emailing the newspaper editor david.summers@jpimedia.co.uk.

Landlord of St Giles Ale House, Terry Steers, said: “The proposed parking charge increase is just yet another case of the councils greed and total failure to listen to the people of Northampton.

“Proof that they have zero long-term plans and can’t see five foot in front of their own face.

“They just want money in their pocket right now, which of course, is a false economy,” he said.

“Increasing parking charges will just push more people and businesses away from the town centre. Someone has to be accountable for these hair brained plans at the council.

“Bring back the good old days where the public could actually face these people.

“Northampton is already on its knees now the council are just sharpening the guillotine.”

HOW TO GET IN TOUCH WITH NORTHAMPTONSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL :

Should you wish to comment on the proposals through the formal process you must put your views in writing no later than the 5th September 2019 to the address below quoting reference PKG/P1803:

Parking & Traffic Orders, Northamptonshire Highways, Highways Depot, Old Harborough Road, Brixworth, NN6 9BX

Or have your say online here.