Last week we received a copy of the email that Burgess Hill resident Chris French sent to the Mid Sussex Times regarding Mid Sussex District Council's amazingly generous offer of £1 for all day parking in the two least popular car parks in town on Saturdays.
Chris was questioning whether £1 was really a good deal considering most people only need to shop for a few hours which would cost £1 anyway. He raised the question of why £1 for all day parking didn't apply to the Multi-Storey Car Park at the Martlets and the ones in Cyprus Road and Church Road which prove much more convenient for shoppers. Thirdly he suggests that MSDC should have made parking free on Saturdays in all the MSDC controlled car parks.
Thankfully the Middy chose to print Chris' letter along with a reply from MSDC's John De Mierre....
The Town Councils and District Council want to support businesses and residents, and allowing all-day parking in the long-stay car parks means that shoppers can do so at their leisure for just £1. We all need to shop locally and keep the district's economy strong.
Clearly a rather pathetic response, not at all addressing the questions raised by Chris French. I guess John De Mierre couldn't give any answers as he didn't have any which would sound logical, so he avoided them all together.
Lets face it, the council didn't bother making it free parking or extending it to the car parks closer to the shops as they wouldn't be able to ticket cars that stay parked too long. If anything, their '£1 all day parking scheme' will make the Council extra money as the Car Parks in Station Road and Queens Cresent are barely used. Its funny that Mr De Mierre says that We ALL need to shop locally to keep the economy strong, yet the Council really haven't done anywhere near enough to entice shoppers both locally and from out of town to want to visit Burgess Hill. Local shops rely on strong Christmas trade to keep them afloat. We're always hearing about these tough economic conditions, yet the council only seem to have made a move which will benefit them and not the local traders or shoppers.
Bravo Mid Sussex District Council. You really do care.
Have a look -- Google 'Free Christmas Parking' and you will find many Council's which are bothering to support local shops.