Independent retailers in Pinner, northwest London, have joined forces to lobby the local council over escalating car parking charges, which they believe are hitting trade.
In an initiative spearheaded by Abbie Hallett, owner of kidswear indie Monkey Business, local companies are working together to collect signatures for a petition, which they will present to Harrow council next week.
Hallett said: “Car parking is currently 70p an hour, which is a lot for a small village. It is putting people off coming here to shop.”
She has put forward a proposal for parking to be made free for the first half-hour and then charged at a reduced rate thereafter.
She added: “Footfall in our area is not what it was two years ago. A lot of indies have gone out of business and there are several empty units on the high street. People drive to the shopping centres in Harrow and Watford. They need incentives such as free parking to encourage them to shop locally.”
Posters advertising the campaign have been put in the windows of local businesses including restaurants, charity shops and estate agents, as well as in Monkey Business.