‘We can’t survive like this’: Barking shopkeepers’ warning after parking charges introduced
PUBLISHED: 07:00 19 February 2020
Shopkeepers have warned that parking charges are putting customers off and threatening their livelihoods.
Traders on the Thames View estate have reported a drop in customers following the roll out of Barking and Dagenham Council's controlled parking zone (CPZ) scheme.
A council spokesman said all RinGo bays in the borough allow 30 minutes free parking indicated on all the signs displayed, but that motorists need to set up an account and register their stay through the app or by telephone.
But Moksud Miah, from Pound Plus in Farr Avenue, Barking, said: "It's scary because we're losing customers. It's getting really difficult."
Syed Ahmed, who runs the Monsoon Grill next door, said his takings were down 30 per cent, adding the passing lunch trade has dried up.
"If things stay like this, then I'm worried. We can't survive like this. I would have to reduce my staff," Syed said.
Ergun Kara, at the Atlantic Fish Bar opposite, said lunchtime should be his busiest period.
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"Customers tell me they can't park here. Drivers don't want to come here. Before there were no problems," he said.
On the Farr Avenue side of the shopping precinct only residents with permits are allowed to park between 8.30am and 5.30pm from Monday to Sunday. It's pay and display at the Bastaple Avenue end.
Shopkeepers want the restrictions lifted at weekends and a daily grace period of at least an hour so customers don't worry about getting a ticket.
The parking ban also appears to be affecting supplies with traders saying deliveries have been missed because drivers don't hang around when wardens are patrolling.
Dogan Garip from Costcutter said: "We've had issues with our deliveries. Everyone is afraid of parking."
A single yellow line at the back of the Farr Avenue shops is also causing problems with delivery drivers unable to stop and offload.
The council spokesman said that RinGo was introduced to the CPZ to encourage short term parking and benefit businesses by increasing the turnover of visitors.
He added that people were consulted in July and provided with the outcome in October. A total of 2,586 households were asked their views and only 9pc objected.