'Victory for people of Enfield' as three-hour Sunday parking charges scrapped (From Enfield Independent)
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'Victory for people of Enfield' as three-hour Sunday parking charges in Enfield Town Centre scrapped
Free Sunday parking is set to return to Enfield Town Centre following a review.
Enfield Borough Council announced today that parking for up to three hours will be free from mid November.
However, parking will cost £2 if people want to stay up to four hours, £5 for up to six hours and £6 for more than six hours.
The controversial charges were introduced in January, with more than 7,000 people signing a petition calling for the scheme to be scrapped.
Traders said the introduction of parking charges was hampering their businesses. Churches in Enfield Town claimed they were not consulted about the fees.
Councillor Henry Lamprecht, who helped set up the petition which was presented at a full council meeting on July 4, is pleased the council has largely axed the fees.
The Conservative politician said: “I am delighted that the council relented on this draconian measure that was killing off Enfield Town shopping and penalising religious services.
“It is a clear victory for the people of Enfield over a money grabbing council. It just goes to show what people power can do, it can make even an arrogant and out of touch council sit up and listen.”
He questioned why the council is making a "stand" by continuing to charge drivers who park for more than three hours.
However, he said most shoppers and worshippers do not need to stay for more than three hours at a time.
According to the council, the charges – which are the same as weekly charges with a £1 rate for under two hours parking, were introduced to reduce congestion and allow a greater turnover of spaces in the town centre.
The council hopes cutting the charges in November will provide retailers with a boost over the Christmas period.
The cabinet member for environment, Councillor Chris Bond, said: "We promised to review these charges and we’ve done that.
"We've listened to residents and traders, and also looked at the facts and found we can achieve our aims while also providing a boost to Enfield Town's retailers and shoppers in what is a difficult trading environment.
"We always promised to review the pricing structure we introduced in January and that's precisely what we've done, this is responsive and responsible local government and shows we make our decisions based on firm facts rather than conjecture.
"The new pricing structure will encourage people to visit Enfield Town Centre, give retailers a festive boost but crucially also discourage people from clogging up our parking spaces while they are strolling round the West End.”