Three Rivers District Council (TRDC) has responded to Conservative councillors and resident’s calls for controversial parking changes to be retracted by claiming Rickmansworth High Street is doing better than ever.
In last month’s edition of RickyNews, we reported how Conservative district councillors David Sansom and Paula Hiscocks claimed footfall in the High Street has become a big problem after TRDC changed two hours free parking to one hour last year.
Cllr Hiscocks set up a change.org petition shortly before the decision was made, which had over 1,700 signatures from residents.
Despite the criticism, the council stood firm on its parking changes.
A spokeperson for TRDC said: “Rickmansworth, for a time, had a reputation as a place where it was difficult to park, putting off potential shoppers and visitors.
“After discussions with consultants, it was decided to introduce charging for parking but retaining the first hour as free. This has successfully increased the churn, thus ensuring visitors know they will be able to park and will not have a wasted journey.
“Those people who were moving every two hours previously to gain free for all day parking are no longer able to do so.
“Since the introduction of parking charges, there has been a decrease in the number of vacant retail units on the High Street, with several new businesses moving in. Contrary to some opinions, the High Street is flourishing, bucking the national trend whereby many well-known brands are losing out to online shopping.
“Rickmansworth continues to offer an attractive environment for visitors with a wide variety of outlets.
“Data collected from the pay and display machines shows that, of the total number of tickets issued from April 8, 2018 to January 2019, 83 per cent were issued as free one-hour tickets.”
What are your thoughts on parking restrictions on the High Street? We’d love to hear from you at Newsroom@mynewsmag.co.uk