Parking hike is a crippling blow to Halesowen traders

A SECOND car parking increase in 13 months will be a crippling blow to Halesowen traders, according to the town’s outraged chamber of trade chairman.

Businessman Wayne Edwards condemned the 17 per cent hike as a “kick in the teeth” to hard-pressed retailers.

He accused Dudley Council of “bleeding the town dry” and vowed to step up the campaign for free short stay on-street parking.

The increase, which will come into effect on Sunday, (June 29) follows an even bigger 25 per cent rise in May 2013.

The chamber has been campaigning for free spaces - to restore some parity with other towns in the borough – but the call has been repeatedly rejected by council bosses.

Mr Edwards said: “To increase parking charges again is outrageous and will hit retailers badly. I’m convinced parking charges have a massive impact on trade.”

He vowed to launch an immediate petition to pressurise the council to allow more free parking to attract shoppers and other visitors to Halesowen.

The Less4Ink boss revealed his turnover was down 12 per cent in the first half of this year and said a photograph he took of the High Street on Tuesday showed just half a dozen shoppers.

Mr Edwards said: “Local authorities use car parking as a source of revenue, but it’s not working in Halesowen, they are bleeding the town dry.

“Car parking should be seen as a vital service not a quick revenue grab at the expense of traders.”

He said Merry Hill owners had fought off parking charges for many years resulting in large corporations, many not even based in the UK, benefitting from the resulting high footfall, while small town centres and retailers suffered.

Dudley’s cabinet member for transportation, councillor Khurshid Ahmed, said the borough remained “one of the cheapest places to park in the Black Country”.

Motorists staying up to an hour on council car parks will have to cough up 70p instead of 60p; for up to two hours the cost will rise from £1.20 to £1.40; for up to three hours it will go from £1.80 to £2.10 and for over three hours the cost will be jacked up from £3 to £3.50.

Evening charges will rise from £1 to £1.10 across the board.

Comments (6)

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1:12pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Sam Vimes says...

Dudley’s cabinet member for transportation, councillor Khurshid Ahmed, said the borough remained “one of the cheapest places to park in the Black Country”.

Are the News regurgitating this old sound bite or did he trot it out afresh for this story? Has anyone ever challenged the claim because a quick search suggests otherwise.

Sandwell: http://www.sandwell.
gov.uk/info/200286/p
arking_and_permits/2
156/car_parks_in_cra
dley_heath

Up to one hour: 40p
Up to two hours: 80p
Up to three hours: £1.20
Up to four hours: £1.60
Over four hours (up to 23 hours): £2

Wolvo:
http://www.wolverham
pton.gov.uk/article/
1725/School-Street-c
ar-park

up to 1 hour: 60p
up to 2 hours: £1
up to 3 hours: £2
up to 4 hours: £4
up to 5 hours: £5.50
over 5 hours: £8
after 5.30pm: £1

Brum: http://www.birmingha
m.gov.uk/parking
(Inner zone)
Up to 30 minutes £1.60
Up to 1 hour £3.00
Up to 2 hours £5.70

(outer zone)
Up to 1 hour 70p
Up to 2 hours £1.40
Up to 3 hours £2.20
Up to 4 hours £2.90

(J. Qtr)
Up to 1 hour 70p
Up to 2 hours £1.40
Up to 3 hours £2.20
Up to 4 hours £2.90

Dudley: (courtesy of the News above)
Up to 1 hour 70p
Up to 2 hours £1.40
Up to 3 hours £2.10
Over 3 hours £3.50

That appears to make Dudley the MOST expensive place to park in the Black Country, no?
Dudley’s cabinet member for transportation, councillor Khurshid Ahmed, said the borough remained “one of the cheapest places to park in the Black Country”. Are the News regurgitating this old sound bite or did he trot it out afresh for this story? Has anyone ever challenged the claim because a quick search suggests otherwise. Sandwell: http://www.sandwell. gov.uk/info/200286/p arking_and_permits/2 156/car_parks_in_cra dley_heath Up to one hour: 40p Up to two hours: 80p Up to three hours: £1.20 Up to four hours: £1.60 Over four hours (up to 23 hours): £2 Wolvo: http://www.wolverham pton.gov.uk/article/ 1725/School-Street-c ar-park up to 1 hour: 60p up to 2 hours: £1 up to 3 hours: £2 up to 4 hours: £4 up to 5 hours: £5.50 over 5 hours: £8 after 5.30pm: £1 Brum: http://www.birmingha m.gov.uk/parking (Inner zone) Up to 30 minutes £1.60 Up to 1 hour £3.00 Up to 2 hours £5.70 (outer zone) Up to 1 hour 70p Up to 2 hours £1.40 Up to 3 hours £2.20 Up to 4 hours £2.90 (J. Qtr) Up to 1 hour 70p Up to 2 hours £1.40 Up to 3 hours £2.20 Up to 4 hours £2.90 Dudley: (courtesy of the News above) Up to 1 hour 70p Up to 2 hours £1.40 Up to 3 hours £2.10 Over 3 hours £3.50 That appears to make Dudley the MOST expensive place to park in the Black Country, no? Sam Vimes
  • Score: 3

10:44pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Phil W Cooper says...

Labours hatred of the car feeds their hatred for business
Labour just want shops to close and businesses to shut producing the next generation of unemployed Labour voters
Labour boroughs like Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton take it in turns to use the same excuse (its cheap) to jack up prices

But have you noticed the nice BMW soft tops some Labour drive ?
your tax paid for them
Labours hatred of the car feeds their hatred for business Labour just want shops to close and businesses to shut producing the next generation of unemployed Labour voters Labour boroughs like Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton take it in turns to use the same excuse (its cheap) to jack up prices But have you noticed the nice BMW soft tops some Labour drive ? your tax paid for them Phil W Cooper
  • Score: 3

6:03pm Sun 29 Jun 14

Downwardii says...

Hmm park in Asda for free or pay 70p for an hour in the graffiti ridden wee smelling council car park. Tough choice.

Council is so short sighted. The number of people who only need an hour in Halesowen is crazy. Why not offer an hours free parking ? They even charge on a Sunday when it's a ghost town.

Funnily enough Merry Hill is growing all the time. Wonder why that is ?
Hmm park in Asda for free or pay 70p for an hour in the graffiti ridden wee smelling council car park. Tough choice. Council is so short sighted. The number of people who only need an hour in Halesowen is crazy. Why not offer an hours free parking ? They even charge on a Sunday when it's a ghost town. Funnily enough Merry Hill is growing all the time. Wonder why that is ? Downwardii
  • Score: 5

6:58pm Tue 1 Jul 14

ukip-halesowen says...

As a local councillor I am totally against these price hikes all it will do is push shoppers/visitors out of the towns. We need to get more footfall in to the towns not less. The council should do a similar system to Asda where you get refund for your parking off shopping, perhaps on your next visits you bring your last ticket with you. This would get a return visit and the shopper gets free parking (via refund). There are other ways that could possibly be done. Get in touch with your ideas. I'm one for bringing people back to the towns not away from them. Lets have more specialist markets in towns (Dudley, Halesowen, Stourbridge) possibly carboots on Dudley car park (sundays) bring people in when the town is mainly closed
As a local councillor I am totally against these price hikes all it will do is push shoppers/visitors out of the towns. We need to get more footfall in to the towns not less. The council should do a similar system to Asda where you get refund for your parking off shopping, perhaps on your next visits you bring your last ticket with you. This would get a return visit and the shopper gets free parking (via refund). There are other ways that could possibly be done. Get in touch with your ideas. I'm one for bringing people back to the towns not away from them. Lets have more specialist markets in towns (Dudley, Halesowen, Stourbridge) possibly carboots on Dudley car park (sundays) bring people in when the town is mainly closed ukip-halesowen
  • Score: 0

12:45pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Sam Vimes says...

I remember when Safeway(I think?) used to offer the parking refund against your shopping bill. The lady on the till said "this is the last refund you'll get as we're stopping it from today". I said "This is the last time I'll shop here then". It was.
I remember when Safeway(I think?) used to offer the parking refund against your shopping bill. The lady on the till said "this is the last refund you'll get as we're stopping it from today". I said "This is the last time I'll shop here then". It was. Sam Vimes
  • Score: 0

10:05pm Thu 3 Jul 14

ukip-halesowen says...

Sam Vimes I think this is the way we should go down in the towns, so those who work in the towns will purchase also and shoppers will get their money back whilst shops will sell. we need to attract shoppers to the towns and keep them coming back and this would be a start. then we need to clean up our towns and reduce the amount of charity, betting, cheque, pound shops. plus get the owners of the buildings to clean up frontages and make them safe and appealing.
Sundays use town car parks for car boots which will bring in more revenue to councils to save jobs and keep council taxes down.
SH
Sam Vimes I think this is the way we should go down in the towns, so those who work in the towns will purchase also and shoppers will get their money back whilst shops will sell. we need to attract shoppers to the towns and keep them coming back and this would be a start. then we need to clean up our towns and reduce the amount of charity, betting, cheque, pound shops. plus get the owners of the buildings to clean up frontages and make them safe and appealing. Sundays use town car parks for car boots which will bring in more revenue to councils to save jobs and keep council taxes down. SH ukip-halesowen
  • Score: 0

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