Citywide parking controls: a ‘nail in the coffin’ for Chichester retail?

We asked retailers for their views on proposals for controlled parking zones throughout Chichester.

Tuesday, 5th March 2019, 11:56 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th March 2019, 12:15 pm
Rose Turner and assistant manager Susanna Dixey at Lush in East Street, Chichester.

The county council is asking for views on an idea to extend paid for or controlled parking into almost all residential areas in the city.

For many staff, such as Rose Turner and assistant manager Susanna Dixey at Lush, travel and parking costs are a real issue for people working in the city, particularly those on shifts.

Proposed Chichester Parking Management Plan. WSCC consultation 01-03-19. Blue areas mark new controlled parking zones. Orange areas are existing CPZs.

Both of them live in Pagham and drive into Chichester, and although they don’t park on residential streets, the cost of parking at a main car park in Chichester is high for someone working part-time.

Susanna said: “A lot of our staff are on eight-hours work a week, a lot of them get public transport but for the people who do drive, that’s taking away a lot of their pay.

“I think for a lot of our customers, a lot of customers will pay but you do get customers who aren’t as well off as well, they do walk far to come in.

“Considering high streets are dying, HMV are closed the Apple shop too, I think it’s really bad.”

Rose Turner said she it felt like ‘another nail in the coffin’.

Many shop mangers and staff were also concerned about a possible deterrent to customers, although some thought it wouldn’t make any difference.

Works store manager Kirsten Lee said she thought it would ‘put people off’ coming to Chichester: “I think it will have a bit of knock on effect, footfall is down in Chichester already, so it’s not going to help.”

Heather Ruggieri, who works at Luckes café said the changes wouldn’t affect her, but she thought the parking changes would also not help draw in visitors, particularly given the recent loss of HMV, House of Fraser, Crabtree and Evelyn and Solutions Inc.

Ros Seamer at Lowery Jewellers thought the same. “They’re making it harder to come here. I think because of the retail shops they should have two days free parking or 9am to 12pm so people can come and shop.”

But Kate Hooker at All that Glitters disagreed. “To be honest, having lived in Chichester all my life, I don’t think it’s going to have an effect.

“If you come to Chichester you know to park in a car park, if you park some where you’re not allowed to park, you get a ticket.

“If it stops people parking stupidly and blocking roads and entrances, then good luck to them.

“I think they should reduce the prices a bit for car parks, because that’s what’s crippling Chichester.”