Traffic wardens back as traders demand action

SELFISH parkers killing off town centre trade could soon be fined by a team of traffic warden-style officers. Shop owners in the Orchard Meadows area say they have lost thousands of pounds and scores of customers because of the cars which clog up the stre

SELFISH parkers killing off town centre trade could soon be fined by a team of traffic warden-style officers.Shop owners in the Orchard Meadows area say they have lost thousands of pounds and scores of customers because of the cars which clog up the streets outside their shops.The Orchard Meadows Traders Association has met with Weston Police Station's chief superintendent Tracey Hayler and MP John Penrose and has persuaded them to try to come up with a way of catching the problem parkers.Traders say they never had these problems when traffic wardens were around and want to see them return. Traffic wardens were recently replaced by police community support officers, which have other responsibilities apart from parking.Mr Penrose has asked Ch Supt Hayler to consider whether officers used to fine illegal parkers on the seafront during the busy summer season could be used to patrol the town centre in the winter.Traders association chairman Ray Monelle, owner of Orchard News in Orchard Street, said: "We are all losing customers because of parking."I know I've lost a lot because I see people who have been coming into the shop for years, who say to me they won't any more because they can't park anywhere near the shop."Before when we had traffic wardens people would only stop for a while and then move on but now they spend all day here, it's killing the trade, and not just for Orchard Meadows."Mr Penrose said: "I have met with the traders and discussed their concerns and have spoken to Tracey Hayler."The first possible solution we thought of was whether the summer seafront attendants could be used in the town centre in winter."However, if this is not viable then obviously we will have to look at an alternative scheme."Ch Supt Hayler was unavailable for comment but is understood to be looking into the feasibility of the scheme.


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