Isle of Wight council ‘not on the side of small businesses’, say Business Associations

The chair of Newport Business Association believes plans to introduce parking charges where there currently aren’t any shows the Isle of Wight council is not on the side of small businesses. Ryde Business Association say the ‘fight is on’.

Union Street ryde

‘The fight is on’, Isle of Wight businesses have vowed, after plans were announced to remove free parking in key locations in Newport and Ryde.

Parking across the Island could become more expensive as plans were announced on Wednesday for on-street charging in Crocker Street and Nodehill in Newport, Union Street in Ryde and on all esplanades.

‘Re-zoning’ Union Street
On Union Street, parking meters could be installed, but another option being considered by the authority is ‘re-zoning’ the street.

Union Street is currently split into several different parking zones, each allowing motorists free parking for a limited period.

After the time is up, motorists can move their vehicle from one parking zone to another to enjoy extended free parking.

The council has said creating a single parking zone on Union Street would close this loophole.

RBA: “The fight is on”
A spokesperson for Ryde Business Association said they would be challenging this decision:

“We heard in the government budget only this week how business rate relief will be extended to help the UK’s high streets, that’s all very well, but giving with one hand to take away with another is simply ridiculous. The fight is on.”

NBA: “Half an hour turnover keeps the street busy”
John McLaughlin is chair of the Newport Business Association and his wife runs Take Two Hairdressers. He said the changes would destroy the ‘lively atmosphere’ in Nodehill.

He said:

“This morning we have seen a UPS guy popping into the shops, a man cleaning windows — the half an hour turnover is so quick, it keeps the street busy.

“Adding a charge will stop people from just popping in to grab a newspaper, or buy fish and chips. What will they make from the street and at what cost? They are not on the side of small businesses.”

He finished by saying

“They’ve announced it right before Christmas because people are too tired to fight it.”

IWC: Introducing “an element of fairness”
Deputy Leader and Cabinet member for Resources, Cllr Stuart Hutchinson, member for finance on the council cabinet, said:

“In some towns on-street parking is free and in others it’s paid for. We are trying to introduce an element of fairness.

“The other thing introducing charges will bring is increased turnover in those areas where we levy a charge. So in those areas where people are parking for free all day, they will only park for a short period of time because they will have to pay for it.”

This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some additions by OnTheWight. Ed

Image: adspackman under CC BY 2.0

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8 Comments on "Isle of Wight council ‘not on the side of small businesses’, say Business Associations"

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So let me get this right – Council votes to give themselves an increase in their allowances, but want to take more money out of our pockets and provide less service.


They say …..IWC: Introducing “an element of fairness… so these fees should apply to everyone including parking in any council car parks i.e. why should other tax payers not get the subsidy they get?

The council must surely be aware of the well proven catastrophic effect introducing or extending parking charges has on local businesses. The must also be fully aware that increasing parking restrictions will put further pressure on the already strecthed residential parking in adjacent areas. Presumably this means that they are not only willing to put short term profit ahead of long term income but also that they… Read more »
The Isle of Wight Council purpose is to support the communities of the Island. By seeking to introduce parking charges to more and more shopping centres is to further impoverish our town centre retail areas and play into the hands of ‘out of town’ shopping centres. Wake up Councillors and get your priorities right or you will be responsible for turning our town centres into ghostly dormitories…
Before anyone is able to make decisions affecting the community, they ought to study the ‘law of unintended consequences’. This plan for parking charges needs to come in a binder with a big heading ‘how to destroy your town centres’. I would like to see some visionary thinking, what if, all town centre car parks were FOC, and all on street parking allowed for the first hour… Read more »

I for one think Brexit is a far greater danger to Island businesses.

In light of yesterday’s news about the National Crime Agency (NCA) investigating Vote Leave, in addition to the Electoral Commission investigation, perhaps a quick email to Bob Seely asking him why he doesn’t think Article 50 should be revoked or at least paused.


So you do not accept the democratic vote to leave the EU?

Mark L Francis

No. Soddem.