Strict new parking rules in Leyland town centre will drive customers away, a business owner has claimed.
New number plate recognition cameras have been put up in the privately-owned car park in Churchill Way, near McDonald’s, stating that only drivers visiting the shops in the small retail park can stop there.
The car park, which is across the road from the council-owned car park near the Leyland Motors clock, is popular with shoppers visiting other businesses in the area, such as on nearby Chapel Brow or Golden Hill.
But if caught, drivers could now be slapped with a £100 fine for using it whilst visiting places in the town centre, and people can only stay there for a maximum of two hours.
The restrictions apply 24 hours a day.
Hayley Lee, who runs the Beijing Chinese restaurant on Chapel Brow, said: “Our customers do use that car park because there are very few spaces on Chapel Brow itself, and I don’t think they will be happy about this.
“If it’s a party of people, they will need more spaces than what is on offer on the street, and I think this type of thing really affects business.
“Sometimes people only want to park for five minutes while they pick up a takeaway, but they won’t want to risk getting a £100 fine.”
She added: “It is a worry that it will put people off coming here.”
Georgina Roberts, Client Account Manager for Parking Eye, which is operating the new rules, said: “An Automatic Number Plate Recognition car park management system has recently been introduced at this car park, as it had become apparent that motorists were parking but not shopping in the stores associated with the site, therefore reducing the number of available spaces for genuine customers.”
She added: “The car park is provided for the use of customers visiting the tenants that are directly situated on the retail park.
“A free two-hour maximum stay is permitted and the system is in operation 24/7.
“Motorists who are visiting businesses in the vicinity of the retail park should not be parking on the retail park even if this has been the case historically.
“The feedback to date from the owners, tenants and customers using the site has been very positive.”
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