MP Mims Davies has criticised Eastleigh Borough Council’s hike in parking charges saying the move could harm local traders, penalise their employees and could deter other stores from coming to the town.
“The council really should be doing all it can to promote businesses, retail and visitors in Eastleigh so this is an unwelcome step that will drive shoppers to out of town centres and our competitors in Southampton and Winchester,” said Mims.
“Raising the rates on 13-week and annual permits is penalising employees who have to park every day and have no choice other than to accept this hike could potentially deter more new retailers from investing in the town.
“Although H&M is arriving at the Swan Centre and this is good news, there sadly has not been an influx of new business, which we would have liked to have seen, into Eastleigh town centre over the past few years, and more expensive parking is not likely to encourage them.
“As a former Councillor, I recognise there will always be difficult local finance decisions to make, however the vitality and vibrancy of Eastleigh Town Centre is so important, I urge the Council to think carefully about enacting this.”