Brighton trade 'hit by devastating parking charges'

Shopkeepers on the main road out of Brighton say the future of their businesses is in jeopardy after new parking charges cut trade by 25%.

On-street parking fees in London Road doubled in April from £1.70 to £3.50 an hour and from £3 to £6 for two hours.

"Quite a few businesses are hanging on by a thread since the parking charges were implemented," said Ann Townsend, chairman of the traders' association.

Councillor Ian Davey said he would be pleased to discuss the traders' issues.

Yellow lines

"The last six months to a year has been devastating - trade has dropped 25%," said butcher Graham Maides, owner of M & B Meats.

"To try to cure it, we went into the delivery side of this and now they have stuck two yellow lines on the pavement and I can't even load and unload outside the shop.

"I've got staff to look after and the council are making a pig's ear out of everything."

Ms Townsend said the Green Party-run Brighton and Hove City Council had no business acumen.

"Traders and trade do not feature on the council's agenda," she said.

'Use car park'

Mr Davey said the London Road area had some of the worst congestion and worst air quality in the city.

He said that, as well as on-street parking, there was a 500-space car park charging £1 for one hour.

"The message is that if people want to drive to London Road that is fine, but please use the car park where prices are much cheaper," he said.

"We would be really happy to speak to the traders and listen to their issues and look at the balance between the needs of the residents and the traders."

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