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Traders claim Harrow Borough Council parking regulations are killing trade
Shopkeepers say CCTV monitoring of parking outside a row of shops in Harrow is “killing off" trade.
Businesses feel they are being “punished” after a camera installed at the corner of Headstone Drive and Harrow View in 2010 has caused a 25 per cent drop in sales.
The area has no on-street parking and the CCTV recording, initially installed to combat crime and security, is now being used to enforce the strict parking regulations.
Shopkeepers say potential customers no longer stop at the shops because they are worried they may receive a fine.
Traders are angry and worried about their “bread and butter income”, complaining that in other parts of Harrow shoppers are given an hour’s free on-street parking.
Mr G Davada, 67, owner of Londis on the corner of Headstone Drive and Harrow Drive, said: “There is no parking. We have been here 38 years and we are struggling to survive.”
He added: “We were told the camera was put here for security and crime.
“There is no crime in this area.”
Businesses and customers petitioned Harrow Borough Council in 2008 to install more parking bays.
But nothing was done until March last year when the council built 12 new spaces on Headstone Drive for shoppers to use.
Traders say this is not enough and want the CCTV camera gone.
Yianinis Chirstofis, who has been running Barracuda Fish Takeaway and Restaurant on Headstone Drive for 15 years, said: “The council doesn’t want to get rid of the camera because it is bringing more money in.
“We have always thought of ourselves as a benefit to the community. We have invested so much, over so many years and the investment is being ignored.”
Mr Alkesh Desai, 52, owner of Desons Limited on Harrow View, said the camera is killing local trade, making it harder for small businesses to compete with high street shops.
He said: “It’s driving away a whole lot of customers.”
The Harrow Times is awaiting a response from Harrow Borough Council.