Next Friday High Street Up Date

We understand that Paddy from Stricklands (Yarm Chamber of Trade) has organised a meeting with SBC Committee members for 2pm on Friday the 28th March in Stricklands. They will be discussing the new A Boards, Displays and Street Furniture regulations.

Unfortunately only 5 people are allowed to attend and it is these 5 people who will be representing the views of all traders in Yarm.

We don’t know who the five are or what views they will be presenting on behalf of traders. We assume and hope they will be trying to limit any downsides of the new enforcement policies, which will involve businesses being fined and the removal of offending items.

Of douse we all assumed Paddy/Yarm Chamber Of Trade were against Pay and Display and as we all know now they spoke in favour of Pay And Display, at the Appeals and Complaints Committee back in September last year. The single reason that allowed SBC to move ahead as they have.

So with this in mind we have contacted SBC and they have promised to call us on Monday re a meeting, will let you know the out come.

In the mean time it is probably a good idea to make sure the high street is not full of offending items. These new rules are of course based on a sound principal, ie. keeping the pavements safe and allowing visitors to walk up and down the High Street with ease. A lot of the new proposals really are common sense.

The big principals are:-

1. No A boards/displays/furniture can be placed on the curb side of the pavement.

2. All items must be next to the building. For example an A board would need to perpendicular to the wall and preferably in contact with the wall.

3. There should be a good 2m gap between whatever item is next to the wall and any lamp post or road sign pole or the curb.

4. With regard to tables/chairs they have to be against the building wall and must have a barrier around them, like Muse and the Ketton Ox have. The barrier issue is going to mean a number of businesses will not be able to have chairs and tables out anymore. The tables within the barrier need to allow for wheel chairs, so there just won’t be enough room. This is one thing that could do with negotiating on.

The fact that we now have 40 pavement based lamp posts is going to affect some businesses in terms of what they can place in the street. Perhaps this is another area where some flexibility in enforcement would be useful.

If we all have crack at making sure we follow the 4 principals outlined above for the coming week, it will serve to identify specific problems that businesses may wish to discuss with SBC.

Will keep you posted. Thanks

New Rules ‘A’ Boards & Tables In Yarm High Street

yarmnightacutout

Please see attached SBCs guidance on the use of A Boards and Table/Chairs on the pavement in Yarm. Click here to download

The guidance is not without merrit but if ridgedly applied in Yarm High Street will have the effect of making many of our product dislays, Cafe tables and chairs and A boards illegal.

We think we should discuss with SBC how we can avoid many businesses having to abandon their current practices. After all there has not been a single accident we are aware of caused by business street furniture.

We understand Stockton Borough Councils ‘Corporate And Social Inclusion Select Committee’ will be making a site visit to Yarm High Street Friday the 28th March 2014, with a view to gathering information about the number of A Boards, their locations etc. and also the use of the pavements for tables/chairs outside cafes and restaurants.

From what we can tell it is likely that a new enforcement regime is to be introduced banning some or all of these items from the street. This is not certain but looks likely.

Graham Birtle is the contact at SBC who is dealing with the matter (graham.birtle@stockton.gov.uk)

Have a read of the SBC document and let us have your views via the form below:

War of numbers between council and traders over impact of pay-for parking in Yarm

Parking row: Yarm

A ROW has broken out between a council and a town’s traders about the expected impact of the introduction of pay and display parking on trade.

Yarm traders’ organisation iTrade has claimed Stockton Borough Council’s own figures predict a 50 per cent decline in trade on Yarm High Street.

Please Click Here for full article in the Northern Echo by Chris Webber.

Dozens Convicted in Marbella Corruption Scandal

Former mayor of Marbella Marisol Yague leaves court in Malaga, Spain, 27 September, 2010 Former mayor of Marbella Marisol Yague was sentenced to six years

Some 50 people have been convicted in a major corruption case centred on the Spanish resort of Marbella.

The case, involving bribery, property fraud and money laundering, resulted in convictions for senior officials.

These included former city planning chief Juan Antonio Roca, who was jailed for 11 years and fined 240m euros (£202m, $300m) for pocketing huge sums.

Two of the coastal city’s former mayors were also handed jail terms over the scams, which came to light in 2006.

Marisol Yague and Julian Munoz received sentences of six and two years, respectively.

A total of 85 men and women were accused in what is thought to be the biggest-ever case of local political corruption in Spanish history.

Roca, who managed the city’s planning department in the 1990s, became one of Spain’s richest men before he was accused of masterminding the corruption.

He was initially given the job at the peak of Marbella’s construction boom by the city’s notorious, late mayor, Jesus Gil, who died in 2004.

The verdict read out in court in the province of Malaga detailed a corruption ring involving building permits being handed out to a succession of officials in return for envelopes stuffed with cash.

Roca himself became extremely rich, with a portfolio of ranches, expensive cars and boats.

The sentences for Roca and the two disgraced mayors were significantly less than those demanded by prosecutors.

They had sought a 30-year term for Roca, who was detained in 2006, but the court took into account his admission of the scale of corruption.

Marbella’s local government was forced to replace large numbers of personnel after the case was exposed.

Stockton’s Plan To Reduce Yarm Trade By 50%

Please read the contents of the email that iTRADE has sent to Stockton Borough Council. Please note that all the numbers used are directly for SBC reports. Please use the link to read the minutes of the Appeals & Complaints Committee meeting on the 10th Sept 2013.

David Bond, Head Of Legal Services Stockton Borough Council

Dear David,

Just to confirm our telephone conversation of yesterday.

You stated that you needed to speak to people before you respond to our e-mail dated 18th September 2013. You also indicated that you were of the opinion that the issues raised were nothing to do with SBC. Please read our e-mail again. We have provided clear evidence that you and your officers were aware of the issue raised and failed to warn Cllrs and the Chairman of the Appeals & Complains Committee (ACC), preferring instead to actually confirm the credibility of the speaker concerned and referring to 22 letters that had been received from businesses. We look forward to your detailed response.

Other Matters (Please note all numbers used below are taken directly from SBC reports and minutes.)

1. Street works began in Yarm 4 days after the ACC meeting held on the 10th Sept. These works have continued every Sunday since. A freedom of information request was made to SBC in May 2013. The reply confirmed that there were no works planned for Yarm High Street in 2013. When were the current works planned, when were the plans drafted, what are the plans (non have been published and no consultation has taken place), when was the budget allocated and when was this work commissioned? You may treat this as a request under the freedom of information act.

Yesterday Sky High Plc erected a large number of CCTV cameras in Yarm High Street, 15 working days from the decision on the 10th, that was not made public until the 27th Sept. Sky High Plc confirm that these cameras are being used to conduct a survey regarding the introduction of Pay & Display.

Please can you provide details of the quotes SBC received for these works, when the quotes were requested and by whom, when the budget was allocated and when Sky High Plc were commissioned to undertake this work. You may treat this as a request under the freedom of information act.

At present there are strong indications that the decision made by the ACC was predetermined. As you know this would be very serious for the Cllrs concerned. It therefore important that you carry out a full investigation as to whether Cllrs have been misinformed by SBC officers.

2. The minutes of the meeting on the 10th confirm that SBC is forecasting a surplus from the Pay and Display scheme of £232k per annum. The minutes at Page 9 Para 8 (Document attached for convenience.) state that revenue from the scheme will be £245k.

At page 23, 7.0, 2nd Para of the Officers report to the ACC (PROPOSED ON STREET CHARGING – A67, YARM HIGH STREET) SBC state the annual running costs including Cash Collection, CCTV and Enforcement will be £13k.

SBC are forecasting a surplus of nearly 95%. This is unlawful.

3. The minutes confirm SBC is forecasting a downturn in High Street trade of 50%. as result if the introduction of Pay & Display. It is not lawful to introduce a scheme that will have this impact on the business community.

1. SBC state that they will take £4700 per week in parking charges. (Minutes at Page 9 Para 8)

2. SBC state there are 12000 car visits to the high street per week. (NEMs)

3. SBC state car parking duration times are as follows. (NEMs) The proposed Pay & Display charges have been attached to the parking activity.

<10min = 200 vehicles per day (NEMs) - free to park
11-30 mins = 220 vehicles per day (NEMs) - free to park
30-60 mins = 640 vehicles per day (NEMs) - £1 revenue per day = £640
61-120mins = 600 vehicles per day (NEMs) - £1 revenue per day = £600
2-3hrs = 60 vehicles per day (NEMs) - £2 revenue per day = £120
3-4hrs = 40 vehicles per day (NEMs) - £3 revenue per day = £120
>4hrs = 20 vehicles per day (NEMs) - £4 revenue per day = £80

This amounts to a total daily parking revenue from Pay & Display in Yarm High Street of £1560 per day, £9360 per week if high street visitor activity is to remain the same as it is currently. SBCs stated weekly revenue of £4700 per week represents a 50% drop in trade.

4. At Page 10, Para 10 the minutes of the ACC meeting state:-

“Members’ initial preference was to request that Long Stay Parking be secured and implemented prior to the introduction of Pay and Display but realised that this might compromise the Council’s negotiations with local landowners.”

reason for not recommending ‘Members initial preferences’ is given as providing a long stay car park prior to the introduction of Pay and Display may “compromise the Council’s negotiations with local landowners”

This is not a lawful reason and it was not within the Committee members gift to consider this reason in any event. This issue had not been raised by SBC officers in the report to the ACC, it was not made public, it was not raised by SBC officers during the meeting and it was not raised by any other contributor at the meeting.

Further, as at the Cabinet meeting in Jan 2013 Compulsory Purchase powers were agreed for the purpose of acquiring land for a long stay car park in Yarm the reason is irrelevant in any event.

We are informed that it was the legal officer present in the private meeting of members who introduced this issue. That individual should have advised Cllrs that this issue could not be considered and certainly should not have suggested that a long stay car park could not be delivered for this reason.

At page 10 para 8 the minutes state:-

“At this point the Committee and Officers from Law and Democracy retired to an adjacent room to consider the information and written and verbal representations it had received.”

Clearly as this issue is not mentioned in any of the supporting documents and was not provided in verbal representations it cannot be considered by the committee.

The decision made by the Committee is not lawful.

An investigation into the officers behaviour should be carried out immediately.

In our conversation this morning you gave the impression that you and SBC do not take these matters that seriously.

We feel that we have now provided you with ample evidence of serious wrong doing or gross incompetence on the part of SBC.

We would ask that the committees decision is ‘called in’ and that all processes re the introduction of Pay and Display are immediately suspended.  There needs to be a proper investigation to establish what has gone on here.

Even SBC cannot possibly believe that a 50% downturn in Yarm trade can be acceptable or in the interests of the Yarm economy. An SBC stated aim that has been used to justify the introduction of Pay and Display is that it will increase trade by 15%. It is now indisputable that the proposed scheme will not achieve this aim and will in fact devastate the Yarm economy. Cllrs must have been misinformed.

We are meeting with relevant Ministers next week and beginning the formal procedure to request that the Secretary of State serves an ‘Intervention Order’ on SBC. This may result in a ‘Traffic Director’ being appointed to investigate and manage SBCs Highways department.

As this issue escalates the consequences for officers and Cllrs become ever more serious. As the head of SBCs legal team we would urge you to act now.

Clearly the consequences for the Yarm community, its businesses and around 600 employes are devastating should you choose not to act.

Please can you provide a detailed reply to the issues raised in this e-mail and answers to the specific questions that have been raised?

Can you also confirm receipt?

Regards
iTRADE Yarm
Kaye Allan/Michael

SBCDecision100913

Get Ready For a Good Laugh!

reasons-why-w-300x300We’ve waited years for this statement. Despite 6 months of formal requests being made by many iTRADE members, iTRADE, Yarm Residents Association and the Federation of Small Business, we have been unable…….until now…..until the consultation period is over……… to identify any of Stockton’s reasons for implementing Pay and Display in Yarm.

Well here they are, so put down your mug of Coffee , lest you fall into an uncontrollable fit of guffaws and giggles and spill it all over yourself!

THE BOROUGH OF STOCKTON-ON-TEES

 (ON-STREET PARKING PLACES)(A67 HIGH STREET, YARM)  ORDER 2013

 

STATEMENT OF REASONS

The reasons for making the Order is for preserving or improving the amenities of the area through which the road runs, for relieving or preventing congestion of traffic and providing suitable and adequate parking places. The Order will provide more flexibility for visitor parking and provide the opportunity for medium stay parking and make the restrictions clearer to understand and less onerous to enforce than the existing Disc Zone. The introduction of a further 80 to 100 medium stay parking places will encourage turnover and parking spaces will be easier to find. The relieving of congestion and improvement of the availability of spaces will aid the economic performance of the town and improve the amenity for the residents.

As you can see none of these reasons are valid in the case of Yarm High St and we will contest all of them because they are just plain dumb!

If you haven’t already figured it out, there’s just no plausibility in their statement. We’ll formalise our response in due course! What the Hell difference will Pay and Display make!!! Moving the problem (if there is one) around, charging people for the privilege and then ‘crowing’ that it’ll aid economic performance. In which town in the UK has charging people to park aided ‘economic performance’? Answers on a postcard please!

NEW EVIDENCE IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED

Please add you name address to the bottom of the email below and email it to David Bond Immediately deadline Midnight tonight. It contains new evidence and should be sent even if you have already objected.

David.Bond@stockton.gov.uk

Mr D.E. Bond

Director of Law & Democracy

Municipal Buildings

Church Road

Stockton-on-Tees

TS18 1LD

David.Bond@stockton.gov.uk

19th July 2013

Ref: Objections To The Pay & Display Traffic Regulation Order

Dear David,

I am concerned that the Council is acting unlawfully in its approach to the implementation of the parking scheme; we do not accept that the current parking disc scheme does not work, we do not believe the Council’s Pay and Display scheme is the solution to create extra capacity for visitors and we do not consider the Council has consulted appropriately on the proposals

It seems no technical evidence or impact assessment has been produced by the Council to justify the need for the scheme; this information is required to ensure the Council is progressing with a financially viable scheme, and to ensure that the impact of displaced parking into adjacent residential areas is appropriately assessed.

There is considerable opposition to the proposals from residents and local businesses in the town; the Council is aware of the strength of local opposition but is continuing to move forward with the scheme.

The National Chairman of the Federation of Small Business John Allan has been to see you and told you that the scheme will damage Yarm. It is also reported in the Local press that SBC has used the FSB name in attempt to imply that you have consulted with them.

You website states

“With any changes, it is important that the different views and possible impacts of them are discussed in an open and honest way.”

As part of the review, Stockton Council has continued to meet with Yarm Town Council, the Federation of Small Businesses and the Chamber of Trade to set out how the proposed changes will work.

SBC has NOT consulted with the FSB. In any event the FSBs position is that Pay and Display will damage Yarm.

SBC has not met with YTC in recent months and in any event Yarm Town Councils position remains that Pay and Display should not be introduced. Its views have been ignored.

SBC have not consulted with the business community of Yarm. SBC were informed that iTRADE Yarm could be approached to seek business opinion. SBC were also informed that Yarm Chamber of Trade no longer represented the views of businesses in Yarm. SBC have continued to seek the views of YCT in the full knowledge that the YCT were no longer representative of this important stakeholder group. Richard McGuckin had ample time to meet with iTRADE Yarm but chose not to.

On the 14th March 2013 I informed Richard McGuckin that Yarm Chamber of Trade no longer represented the views of the business community in Yarm.

“Please be advised that if you wish to carry out this process correctly it will be essential for your offices to meet with us to discuss the Business communities views on Pay & Display and other parking arrangements in Yarm. Yarm Chamber of Trade no longer have the mandate to do so.”

It would have been very straight forward for your officer to establish the validity of this statement.

Please also see this e-mail:-

From: Enquiries Holt <enquiries@stricklandandholt.co.uk>Subject: Re: YTC Date: 18 July 2013 20:53:13 GMT+01:00 To: Chris Johnson<chris@yarm-town-council.com>Reply-To: Enquiries Holt <enquiries@stricklandandholt.co.uk>

Thank you for including me in your email. I don’t believe it is a subject of contention that itrade has the majority support of traders with regard to the P & D issue.

I certainly have not claimed, nor I think has Stephanie, to represent the majority of traders in Yarm over this issue, nor did I during the Town Council Meeting where I made it very clear I was expressing my own views. (Which, mainly about long stay parking, were reasonably well received).

I would also say that, as requested by yourself, Stephanie has not continued to negotiate with Stockton Borough Council since the last documented meeting, which Michael (Kaye’s partner) attended , although she has talked to Richard McGuickin once when he updated her on a long stay car park. This was to allow you space to try to stop P & D if you were able.

As far as I am aware, while Stephanie has not changed her mind on P & D, her views have only really been expressed in emails to yourself and other individuals in Yarm and not SBC. While i can understand that you may find it a source of irritation that you haven’t got her on board, the reality is she is entitiled to her own opinion and it should not have impacted on your efforts publicly to fend off P & D.

Kind regards, Paddy

iTRADE Yarm represents 98 businesses in Yarm:-

Adam Barber Shop, AJL Specialist Fencing Contractors, Alison Pybus Family Mediator, ArtsBank Yarm, At The Skin Company, Attitudes Womenswear, Aviva Labs, Bang and Olufsen, Bluestrawberry, Boots, Bridgfords Estate Agents, Browns Alternative Flooring, Business consultants (Internatonal) Limited, Cloud Cuckoo, Coles Solicitors, Cooplands, Crofters, Crumbs Sandwich Bar, Dashing Hounds, David Spooner Plumbing and Bathroom services Yarm, Diana Kaye Florist, Diva, Domestic Cleaning Services Yarm, DotUK, Dream Doors, Eagle Compliance Ltd, ELR Architects, Enhance Dental Care, Fat Face, Fonehouse, Foodie Magazine Teesside, Forths Solicitors, G Shackleton, Gaia Heat Limited, Happy Leaves Ltd, Hairtek Ltd, Halifax Plc, Henderson Opticians, Impressions, Independant Cambridge Weightplan Consultant, JJ’s Butterfly Cupcakes, Jules B, Kyle Travel Services, L.A.HAIR, Lewis & Coope, Marketcross Jewellers, Lotus Lounge, Melling Financial Planning, Michael Poole, Miranda Marie Bridal, Muse, NATWEST Bank, Originals Interiors, Physiotherapy@theskincompany, Pop Vocals Classical Singing, Pro Install, R&H Properties, R D W Bespoke Furniture, Readman Rohan Ltd, Rees & Wade Optometrists, Roseberry Newhouse, Sainsburys, Saks Hairdressing, Santoro Restaurant, Say it with Glass, Scott-Collier Taylor, Sparkle and Spire Jewellery, Starters, Stephen Russel, Stewart Greenidge Decorating, Synergy Telecoms, Teesside Media Group, The Cake Room Ltd, The Conservatory, The Dressing Room Yarm, The 500 Group, The Keys Yarm, The Linton Centre, The Little Black Dress Agency, THE LITTLE BRA SHOP, The pilates studio yarm, TheMockingbird Deli, Thomas The Baker, Thomsons Travel, Violette Lingerie, Yarm Building Services, Yarm Computers Ltd, Yarm Cricket Club, Yarm DIY, Yarm Originals, Yarm Osteopaths, Yarm Web Design, YOPP Ltd, Your Move

To date Richard McGuckin has sent a standard reply to iTRADE confirming receipt of their original email. On the 19th March 2013 Richard McGuckin e-mailed iTRADE Yarm indicating that he would consider meeting.

No further communication has been attempted or made with iTRADE Yarm by Richard McGukin or Stockton Borough Council.

Richard McGuckin has reported to members and widely in the press that proper consultation has taken place with all relevant interest groups. Richard McGuckin has stated that “in the past he has arranged meetings with the business community in Yarm and complained that only 23 people attended.” 23 people who were all against Pay and Display in any even does not represent proper consultation with the business community of Yarm. Richard Poundford a senior SBC officer attended this meeting.

Much of this behavior appears to have been deliberate. At best it demonstrates incompetence and if this behavior has been a deliberate attempt to ignore the views of a significant stake holder and there would appear to be no other explanation, it should certainly be investigated by Stockton Borough Council’s senior management team and the appropriate action taken.

SBC have not had proper consultation with stakeholders during this process. Obtaining a TRO on this basis would not be lawful.

By the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 a local authority has the power to provide off-street parking places and authorise on-street parking for the purpose of relieving or preventing congestion of traffic. Section 35 of the Act gives the local authority power to impose charges for off-street parking. The local authority may not authorise roads for on-street parking if that will unreasonably prevent access to any premises adjoining the road or so as to be a nuisance. By section 37(4) the local authority may not make such an order unless they are satisfied that the general scheme of traffic control

(a) is adequate in point of area;

(b) takes adequate account of the need for maintaining the free movement of traffic and of the need for maintaining reasonable access to premises;

(c) takes adequate account of the effect of heavy commercial vehicles on amenities; and

(d) makes provision for street parking places, and for regulating their use with the aid of apparatus or devices, which is suitable, regard being had to the extent to which off-street parking places are available in the neighbourhood or their provision is likely to be encouraged by the scheme.

By section 45 of the Act, there is a power for local authorities to designate parking places on highways. Under this provision, the local authority may charge for on-street parking. Again, when considering whether to make such an order, the local authority must have regard to

(a) the need for maintaining the free movement of traffic;

(b) the need for maintaining reasonable access to premises; and

(c) the extent to which off-street parking accommodation, whether in the open or under cover, is available in the neighbourhood or the provision of such parking accommodation is likely to be encouraged there by the designation of parking places under this section.

Section 122 provides:

“(1) It shall be the duty of every local authority upon whom functions are conferred by or under this Act, so to exercise the functions conferred on them by this Act as (so far as practicable having regard to the matters specified in subs.(2) below) to secure the expeditious, convenient and safe movement of the vehicular and other traffic (including pedestrians) and the provision of suitable and adequate parking facilities on and off the highway …

(2) The matters referred to in subs.(1) above as being specified in this subsection are–(a) the desirability of securing and maintaining reasonable access to premises; (b) the effect on the amenities of any locality affected and (without prejudice to the generality of this paragraph) the importance of regulating and restricting the use of roads by heavy commercial vehicles, so as to preserve or improve the amenities of the areas through which the roads run; (bb) the strategy prepared under s.80 of the Environment Act 1995 (national air quality strategy); (c) the importance of facilitating the passage of public service vehicles and of securing the safety and convenience of persons using or desiring to use such vehicles; and (d) any other matters appearing to the local authority to be relevant.”

Case Law

In R v Camden LBC ex parte Cran [1995] RTR 346, McCullough J emphasised that the power to impose parking charges was not to be used for raising finance. Further, section 122 requires that the scheme had to provide suitable and adequate parking facilities for residents and businesses facilities so far as practicable and that duty was balanced by the duty to facilitate the safe movement of traffic. In relation to consultation, McCullough J reiterated at 373-4 the requirements for consultation to be considered effective:

The duty to consult may be imposed by statute or may arise because the parties to be consulted have a legitimate expectation of consultation which results either from a promise or from an established practice of consultation.

What kind and amount of consultation is required in a particular case must depend on the circumstances. A few general principles can, however, be stated. The process of consultation must be effective; looked at as a whole, it must be fair. This requires that: consultation must take place while the proposals are still at a formative stage; those consulted must be provided with information which is accurate and sufficient to enable them to make a meaningful response; they must be given adequate time in which to do so; there must be adequate time for their responses to be considered; the consulting party must consider the responses with a receptive mind and in a conscientious manner when reaching its decision.

In addition, consultation “with” the relevant people means a two-way process, not just receiving representations from them.

In R v North and East Devon Health Authority ex parte Coughlan [2000] QB 213 at 108 the Court of Appeal said that a public authority cannot wait for people to make representations; it must actively inform the affected persons of the proposals and give them the opportunity to make representations. The Court said that “to be proper, consultation must be undertaken at a time when proposals are still at a formative stage; it must include sufficient reasons for particular proposals to allow those consulted to give intelligent consideration and an intelligent response; adequate time must be given for this purpose; and the product of consultation must be conscientiously taken into account when the ultimate decision is taken”.

With new evidence that has come to light post the JR brought by YTC last year there is no doubt that in terms of law SBC has not come close to conducting proper consultation re Pay and Display.

Further, SBC has yet to provide a lawful reason for introducing Pay & Display into Yarm High Street. The cobbles are deemed to be High Way and do not represent a car park on private land the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 applies.

Pay and Display will have no effect on congestion.

The Disc Zone works with the PCN issue no longer existing. PCN rates of issue in the High Street have dropped by 58% since the report provided to Cabinet sighting this as a reason to change parking management. The high PCN issue rate was clearly caused by over zealous enforcement as the only thing that has changed is the town has one enforcement office instead of 3. Officer failed to provide this information to Cabinet in January this year.

Their decision was therefore based on out of date information. The officers concerned should be investigated by SBC as this is a serious failure in such an important issue that effects the lives of 1000s of people.

Pay and Display will have no effect on road safety.

There are no lawful reason to for SBC to obtain a TRO under the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984.

SBC should therefore scrap all of the restrictions proposed in the relevant TRO.

The Council appears to be attempting to deliver a scheme that will drive footfall from Yarm to its own failed High Street

The Council also needs to be mindful of the advice contained within the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). Paragraph 40 states:

‘Local authorities should seek to improve the quality of parking in town centres so that it is convenient, safe and secure, including appropriate provision for motorcycles. They should set appropriate parking charges that do not undermine the vitality of town centres. Parking enforcement should be proportionate’

In addition, the advice containing in the 2011 Portas Review states:

‘Local areas should implement free controlled parking schemes that work for their town centres and we should have a new parking league table’

The information provided on the Council’s website does not demonstrate how the scheme meets the above requirements of the NPPF, nor how its proposals sit with the findings of the Portas Review.

The vitality of the Yarm town centre is key to the implementation of any parking scheme, and to ensure that this vitality is maintained and improved the Council needs to listen to stakeholders, residents, visitors, businesses, workers and organisations like the FSB.

Stokesley operates a near-identical free 2-hour disc parking scheme to Yarm across their 167 parking spaces across the High Street. Charges are in place for the use of the Showfield car park, ranging from 50p for 1 hour through to £2 for a whole day). The alternative parking proposal put to SBC by YTC follows this exact model without the need to introduce Pay and Display into the High Street

I consider the Council is trying to deliver a strategy that is without basis save for driving footfall to Stockton High Street.

Without the technical evidence to demonstrate the current parking demand, duration of stay, turnover of spaces and compliance with existing parking restrictions the Council is trying to deliver a strategy based on a combination of phone and face to face interviews with a cross-section of the community. This doesn’t give the Council the information it needs to prepare a robust assessment of the existing baseline parking conditions, nor the ability to build a financial model based on comparable evidence of the expected usage and turnover of spaces, revenue raised from Pay and Display and the impact of the likely take up of residents permits for the controlled parking area.

SBC have not considered the potential for their proposals displacing car parking into uncontrolled residential areas around the town. Egglescliffe village is a prime example of an area that is easily accessible to the town centre on foot, making it vulnerable to medium to long stay shopper and employee parking should these motorists wish to avoid paying for their parking.

No direct consultation with the residents in Egglescliffe, or other surrounding areas has taken place. As the more peripheral residential areas are expected to see the greatest impact from displaced car parking the Council should be engaging with residents in these areas to discuss the proposals and potential impacts/mitigation measures. They have NOT.

NO High Street in the UK has seen an upturn in trade as a result of introducing parking charges. This is a stated aim of SBC. Please provide detailed evidence as to why SBC believes this to be the case.

SBC has not been able to demonstrate that it has conducted any meaning full consultation with the stakeholders involved with this proposal. Indeed SBC are the only organisation that believe the scheme will improve Yarm. Members involved in this decision have been provided by false or out of date information.

Please this report briefing from the FSB

Car Parking

FSB one page briefing

In 2010-11 parking charges raised £1.27 billion for local authorities in England. With total parking charges rising to an estimated £8bn per annum, it is unsurprising that the issue of parking topped a recent poll of FSB members, with 73% of respondents indicating that it was a priority issue for the future of independent shops. The cost, supply, location and quality of parking spaces for customers must be addressed to help keep our high streets alive.

Local Authorities’ powers regarding parking charges are set out in legislation. Although there are no limits on the level of local authority parking charges, they are not permitted to deliberately over charge However; the law permits them to retain any surplus from on-street parking that does occur after expenses, and to either carry them forward or spend them on other specified transport related activities

What is the FSB’s view?

The FSB supports the call in Mary Portas’ review of the future of the high street, that Local areas should implement free controlled parking schemes that work for their town centres and we should have a new parking league table. The Government agrees that parking charges have a real impact on the success of the high street, and it is essential that local authorities seriously consider the implications of their decisions on parking charges for the high streets which are such an integral part of our communities.

What can you do?

Local authorities across England (including Police and Fire Authorities) are required to consult the business community about their proposed budgets for the following year. The reference point for England is Section 65 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

Members should enquire of their local council how the economic difficulties and deficit reduction programme continues to affect their operations and how the situation could affect future operations and services. In particular, has the council increased parking charges, and any plans they may have regarding provision and maintenance of parking spaces.

In December 2012, DCLG consulted on proposed changes to the Code of recommended practice for local authorities on data transparency. These changes will soon require local authorities to publish details of: revenue from off-street parking charges; revenue from on-street parking charges; the number of off-street parking places; the number of on-street parking places; the revenue from parking fines; and the number of free parking spaces available in line with The Portas Review. You can also use this information as the basis for initiating discussions with your local authority.

Facts and Figures

In September 2012, Confused.com published a survey on car parking charges with the following results:

The survey of 2,000 people found 69% intentionally avoided shopping areas with high parking prices

Britons are now spending nearly £8bn a year to park their cars with prices rising 12% last year.

It appears that the cost of parking could be a leading factor in the decline of UK high streets, with 65 per cent of consumers admitting that expensive parking puts them off shopping locally. As many as 65% said they would return to the high street if parking was more affordable

Around 78 per cent of respondents to the survey spend up to £150 a month on parking.

More than half – 57 per cent – of all parking spaces in the UK charge a fee.
Can you provide all of the information you hold regarding which stakeholders/individuals believe that Pay and Display will benefit Yarm?

I would ask that all of the restrictions in the Relevant TRO are scrapped and that the current arrangements remain.

Regards

URGENT LAST CHANCE MEETING TONIGHT

URGENT

SAVE OUR HIGH STREET

Last Chance To Voice Your Opinions

TUESDAY 16th July (TONIGHT) 7:30pm

YARM TOWN HALL

PLEASE ATTEND.
IF YOU CAN’T, GET SOMEONE ELSE TO COME IN YOUR PLACE

This is it, speak your mind and don’t be shy.

Please can members circlate this to as many people as possible. Can you also get the message out on your Facebook networks.