Since Waitrose commenced parking warnings earlier this year the Town Council has been  contacted by both residents and businesses concerned about the impact the warnings are  having. The Town Council undertook two separate surveys in June (one for businesses and one  for residents). We received 589 responses from the residents survey and 57 businesses  responded.  

Just under half of all residents (288) reported that they visited the Town Centre between 2-4  times a week. Tuesday, Friday and Saturday were the most popular days to visit and most  people stayed between 1-2 hours. 37% of people stayed longer than 2 hours. 63% of  respondents stated that they had abandoned a trip because they were unable to park and 47%  of people stated that they had altered the number of times of the duration of the visit because  they were concerned about receiving a fine. 56% of people stated that they did not support  Waitrose enforcing the short stay area of the car park and just over 20% were undecided if they  supported the measure. 

The business survey identified that some businesses had their own limited parking for staff and  also some parking for customers. 59% of businesses reported that their staff had difficulty  parking and 63% said that customers had reported difficulties parking. 40% of the businesses  believed that the parking warnings had impacted their businesses and a further 15% were  unsure at present whether the warnings had impacted their businesses. 

The Town Council has written to Waitrose with the results of the survey and have requested a  meeting to discuss the parking situation. We have a number of ideas that we would like to  explore with Waitrose to try to minimise the impact on residents and businesses. In addition, an  invitation will be sent to all business over the coming weeks to attend a meeting with the Town  Council at the Civic Hall to see what other actions can be taken.