Tuesday, 8 December 2009


A new scheme, introducing free parking on Saturday afternoons running up to Christmas in Birchington, Broadstairs, Margate, Northdown Road in Cliftonville and Ramsgate has been welcomed by traders.

The free parking initiative is part of Shop Local First, a scheme developed by the council, working with local traders, to help support shops during the recession. Over 100 businesses in the five pilot areas have signed up and are now offering a range of discounts and offers to local people when they use their Shop Local First Incentive Card. More than 15,000 cards have been distributed since the scheme's launch in early November.

Two hours free parking is being offered after 12pm at all on-street parking sites on Saturdays in the run-up to Christmas. The final two dates are Saturday 12 and Saturday 19 December.

People can only take advantage of the free parking if they clearly display a free parking voucher, which is being advertised in all Thanet's local newspapers and on the council's website at www.thanet.gov.uk. Vouchers can also be collected from all the businesses taking part in Shop Local First scheme.

Feedback from local businesses following the first Saturday of the scheme has been very positive, with shops reporting that they had new customers as a result of the free parking vouchers.

Leader of Thanet District Council, Cllr. Sandy Ezekiel, said: "As far as I'm aware, we're the only council in Kent to do this in the run-up to Christmas. It's been good to have such positive feedback from local traders on the first week of the free parking. Once we have all the results back, we will look at whether to do this again next Christmas.
"Hopefully, over the next couple of weekends, even more people will start to take advantage of the free parking and will support their local high street by ensuring that they Shop Local First. With the incentive card, there are literally hundreds of reasons now to visit your local shops and, with Christmas fast approaching, there's no better time to find out what your local town or village has to offer."

The offer applies only to the following on-street parking areas:

Crescent Road
Station Road
Belvedere Road
Charlotte Street
Charlton Avenue
Dundonald Road
High Street
Lawn Road
Lloyd Road
Vere Road
Victoria Parade
York Street
Albert Terrace
Cecil Street
Churchfields Place
Hawley Square
High Street
Marine Drive
Mill Lane
Union Crescent

Northdown Road, Cliftonville
Northdown Road

Albion Place
Broad Street
Brunswick Street
Cavendish Street
Harbour Parade
Hardres Street
King Street
Queen Street

The Shop Local First Incentive Card is now available from the 100 plus businesses taking part and can also be picked up from libraries and Thanet's Gateway Plus in Margate.

The scheme will initially run for a year, but if it proves to be successful, it could be extended for longer and into other parts of Thanet. Businesses taking part in Shop Local First will all display a Shop Local First sticker in their window.

To find out more about the scheme, visit the Shop Local First page on the council's website at www.thanet.gov.uk or call 01843 577000. For a full list of businesses taking part in the scheme, visit www.thanet.gov.uk/shoplocal If you are a business and want to join the Shop Local scheme, call 01843 577169.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please note comments that may be libellous, comments that may be construed as offensive and anonymous derogatory comments about real people will be deleted. Also note the facility to leave anonymous comment will be turned of during periods when I am unable to monitor comment, this will not affect people commenting who are signed on to their blogger accounts.

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.