1,100 people sign Clare parking row petition

A PETITION against proposed changes to parking in Clare has been signed by more than 1,100 people.

Business owners and residents started the petition in a bid to oppose the restricting of free parking on Market Hill from two hours to one.

David Salter, owner of F D Salter Antiques on Market Hill, said: “We started the petition against the changes and every business in the square signed it.

“Then there was another petition to say that nobody wanted this – and we had more than 1,100 signatures from people.

“People can’t do their shopping in an hour, it is physically impossible.

“They come into Clare for various things and they couldn’t go for a cup of tea or anything. If people can’t park, they aren’t going to stay, it’s that simple.”

Clare currently has a mixture of two and one-hour parking. The parish council approached Suffolk County Council with a proposal to restrict the parking, which was investigated by officers who made recommendations to the council’s rights of way committee, which also received the petition.

Parish council chairman Keith Haisman said: “It didn’t come before the parish council and I didn’t even see it to sign it.”

Mr Haisman explained that the restrictions had been recommended due to the way in which people use the parking facilities.

Guy McGregor, Suffolk County Council’s portfolio holder for roads, transport and planning, said: “In terms of policy, we always take note of the views and recommendations of people when making decisions.

“The issue about the parking in Clare was thoroughly examined at the rights of way committee a few months ago.”

For the full story see last week’s Free Press.