Derby

Matlock parking system devised by independent traders

Traders in a Derbyshire town have devised their own parking scheme to attract more shoppers.

Business owners in Matlock say the high council charges are discouraging customers and have affected business.

Up to 30 independent businesses in the town are offering customers who spend more than £15 a deduction of £1.90 - or the equivalent of two hours parking.

The district council said parking prices compared with similar tourist destinations and a review was planned.

Danielle Barker, who runs a jewellery shop in Matlock, said traders had noticed a drop in business after a supermarket was built on land that was used as a free car park.

Affordable parking

"Car parking charges in Matlock are on par with the big shopping centres where there is more choice and bigger stores rather than independent businesses so people will often go there instead," Ms Barker said.

"I would rather have the customers through the door and give them their £1.90 back than not see people at all because they can't afford the parking."

Ms Barker added: "The traders cover it because the council said they can't help us with it.

"I think this scheme will catch on and so many towns will be forced to do this just to encourage more people into their town to shop."

A spokesman for Derbyshire Dales District Council said: "Every household in the Derbyshire Dales already has a permit issued by the district council to park free in any of our car parks before 11am and after 4pm every day.

"We are about to consult the public on a car parking review and would recommend Matlock traders use this channel to put forward any new ideas."

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