On 16th November, NRA presented a petition to London Borough of Hillingdon signed by a significant number of retailers in Northwood protesting about the large increase in parking charges for non-Hillingdon First cardholders.
Of course a large part of Northwood is in Hertfordshire, yet those residents think of Northwood as “their” town centre, and of course visit its shops, salons and surgeries. The sudden and severe increase in the hourly parking rate for those residents discriminates against them, and there is concern that it is affecting Northwood businesses too, as it is quite natural for Herts residents to vote with their feet and go elsewhere (e.g. to Rickmansworth where car parking is free for 2 hours).
The outcome of the hearing was that, although LBH expressed sympathy for the problem, it was reaffirmed that the current differential parking rates will remain unchanged.
However LBH has agreed to meet the petitioners “to discuss in greater detail their concerns regarding the recent increase in parking charges for non-HillingdonFirst cardholders”.
In addition, council officers have been instructed to break down the statistics about HillingdonFirst card use, so that a comparison can be made between the number of HillingdonFirst cardholders and non-residents that were using the machines. This would show if there has been a drop in the number of non-HillingdonFirst cardholders using them and would also show use of the initial free half-hour period which is available to all.