COUNCILLOR Sam Nicholson is urging motorists to be more considerate when parking in Armagh and its neighbouring towns.
His call comes after he was contacted this week by a number of business owners who were concerned that the current free car parking which is currently available is being used as a type of park and ride facility.
There are also concerns that staff from the businesses are parking all day in spaces which, it is felt, should really be for customers.
Cllr Nicholson told the Ulster Gazette that this is leading to a “huge reduction of available customer car parking within our city and towns.
“This car parking is essential in order to help our local independent traders, as they have all recently re-opened and are trying to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
“As a councillor I will ensure that the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Council do everything in their power to help promote our city and towns and what they offer. Many of those twons are the home of long-established family businesses.
“An example of what the council is doing is our recently launched ‘We’ve missed you’ campaign which promotes a strong support local message. It encourages everyone to spend locally to show their ‘love’ for local businesses at this crucially important time for many, after a long period of closure.”
The UUP councillor said that businesses wanted the public to know that they are very much open for business.
“They want to welcome shoppers and provide the best retail experience for them, so therefore they require available car parking for these customers close to their shop,” he added.
“These businesses are owned by local people who believe in our city and towns and have continued to invest and grow by employing local people and stocking their shops with local suppliers.
“As a result any money that is spent circulates back into our local economy which helps promote and sustain our city and towns.
“Therefore I would urge everyone to help us by being more considerate in their use of the available car parking spaces within our city and towns.”