Free trade row

Cafe owner Robert Silverwood at Lowther Gardens in Lytham. Robert is angry after Fylde Borough Council have stopped charging for car parking on the day of the Mayor Making.
Cafe owner Robert Silverwood at Lowther Gardens in Lytham. Robert is angry after Fylde Borough Council have stopped charging for car parking on the day of the Mayor Making.

RESIDENTS have hit back at traders campaigning for extended free parking in Lytham town centre – claiming they are contributing to the problem themselves.

Traders have been accused of swallowing up all day free parking on residential streets – forcing shoppers on to short-term car parks.

Town centre traders want two hours’ free street parking and will send their petition to Fylde Borough and Lancashire County councils.

Mandy Sisson, owner of Mandy Sisson fashionwear, Dicconson Terrace, said the petition could be signed in shops displaying notices supporting the campaign. She said the one-hour parking “was stopping people coming to town”.

But resident Jane Knights referred to the no parking restrictions on town centre residential streets, saying; “Therefore, all the traders who complain about the lack of parking, actually park all day every day for free on the residential streets. They never use the car parks.

“The station car park has the capacity for 110 cars, the average number of cars parked there is 10 per day. This causes immense irritation and inconvenience to any residents as it is virtually impossible to park anywhere near our homes Monday to Saturday from nine to five. The shoppers are then forced to use the short term car parks. Obviously, this does deter people from shopping in Lytham but the traders are creating some of this problem. I have suggested to Tim Ashton (county councillor) that the traders are given a parking pass for the Station car park which would help to alleviate this problem.”

However, Lytham Enterprise Group vice-chairman Robert Silverwood said: “Having permits for the Station Road car park for workers – it’s not going to work. People are lazy and will take the easiest way and park where they will. There should be two hours on the main street and the main area, but what I would like to see on the car parks themselves, and I’m not going to get it, is three hours free parking and if you overstay your welcome, you get booked.”

Coun Ashton said: “I’m happy to work with Fylde Borough Council on permits and traders. It would be a great idea to because that car park is underused.”