Maida Vale parking camera is ruining our businesses, say traders

Elgin Avenue shop owners angry at loss of customers thanks to ticket threat

Traders in a small Maida Vale parade of shops say business has fallen by up to 20 per cent as a result of a parking enforcement camera that was installed earlier this year.

The camera was erected on the corner of Elgin Avenue and Lanark Road in February to clamp down on people committing parking offences in the area.

But traders say congestion was never a problem and customers are now being put off from popping into the shops.

Hamid Al Kateb, who runs a grocery, said: “The camera is terrible, all of my customers complain about it.

“It’s hard to say exactly how much business I’ve lost but I would say it’s about 20 per cent of my customers.”

A Vineyard Pharmacy shop assistant said: “It’s really affecting our elderly patients in particular because some of them can’t get down here other than by car.

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“We’ve had letters of complaint from customers who have been given tickets because people run in for a minute to pick up their prescription and don’t realise it’s not the traffic wardens they have to worry about, it’s a camera.”

With traders considering a petition against the camera, it seems Maida Vale’s councillors are also at loggerheads over the issue.

Cllr Jan Prendergast sent an email to her fellow councillor Lee Rowley, who is also cabinet member for parking and transportation, stating she “sincerely hoped” he would “give a directive for the removal of this camera”.

Speaking to the Wood&Vale since sending the email, she said: “I’m a huge champion of small businesses. They are the lifeblood of our community so I want to do the best for them.

“Cllr Rowley has assured us that the camera will be taken away when the drivers are being compliant. We would all like to see it come down as soon as possible.”

Cllr Rowley said: “As soon as compliance is at the appropriate level then the camera will be gone. But we have to sort the problem out first.

“I am concerned about anyone who says there has been a dramatic effect on their trade, but you can’t make policies on the basis of people saying they don’t like it, but on the basis of facts and analysis.”