A ROW has broken out over plans to increase business parking in Nelson town centre.

Proposals have been drawn up by PEARL (Pendle Enterprise and Regeneration Ltd) to take over the New Brown Street car park and provide 25 business parking spaces.

These spaces would be used by staff at the ACE Centre, and could be used to attract more businesses to the centre.

Labour councillors in the town have delayed making a decision on the scheme for another month, and said they wanted to protect Nelson residents as well as help businesses.

But their Conservative colleagues have accused them of not caring about the ‘prosperity’ of the area.

Coun Mohammed Iqbal, Labour leader in Pendle, said: “This is probably the best used car park for shoppers in Nelson town centre so it is not a decision that can be taken lightly. We have asked the people involved to go away for a month and see if a compromise can be reached.

“We are looking after Nelson residents as well as trying to help businesses.

“I asked how many businesses were ready to sign up and move in subject to car parking and the answer was zero, so it is purely a speculative request at this stage.”

Nelson Conservative councillor Tommy Cooney said: “Yet again I’m left in disbelief by the Labour Party in Nelson.

“They don’t know what’s good for the town.

“Filling these offices would bring extra benefits to the town in terms of spend in the local area.

“It flies in the faces of everything the Conservatives have tried to do with projects like the Portas Pilot, and leaves me wondering whether they care at all about the prosperity of the area.”