Sunday, 18 October 2009

Last week for Lammas Street Petition

As the period for signing Plaid’s petition against the introduction of parking meters in Lammas Street comes to an end, the party set up a stall in the centre of Carmarthen last week to enable even more members of the public to support the campaign.

Cllr Arwel Lloyd, who has been leading the campaign, was supported by Cllr Peter Hughes Griffiths and Plaid’s parliamentary candidate, John Dixon. Cllr Lloyd said, “We have had tremendous support for this campaign, with most of those people to whom we have spoken being only too willing to sign our petition. The petition is also available in a number of shops in Lammas Street itself. We will be closing the petition in another week so that it can be presented to the council – I’d urge anyone who wants to sign it to do so in one of the shops most affected by the proposal, or to contact me direct.”

Introducing charges for parking in Lammas Street would be a serious blow to business in Carmarthen Town Centre, according to John Dixon. He said, “At a time of recession, many businesses are already suffering severely. The last thing they need is another deterrent to people using local shops. We know from what local traders tell us that large numbers of people use the free short term parking in Lammas Street to make a quick visit to just one or two shops at a time – this sort of trade is likely to be eliminated completely by the council’s proposals. We need thriving vibrant town centres, but the council seems to be willing to sacrifice some of the town’s businesses in exchange for the fees which it will collect for parking.”

Last year, Plaid councillors succeeded in persuading the council to delay the introduction of charges for one year, but warned at the time that winning a delay was not the same as preventing the scheme completely. Plaid’s leader on Carmarthenshire county council, Cllr Peter Hughes Griffiths, said, “The one year’s stay of execution will soon come to an end, and it is vital that we all put as much pressure as possible on the county to abandon these ill-thought out plans. We will shortly be presenting the completed petition to the council, but we would also urge people from the town to express their views by writing to the council. It will be too late to speak up once the plan has been implemented.”

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