When news happens, text LT and your photos and videos to 80360. Or contact us by email or phone.
Accrington traders worried about new bus station
8:00pm Friday 18th October 2013 in News
BUSINESSES in Accrington have spoken of their fears for trading once bus station in Peel Street is moved.
A new £4.5m station is set to be built in Crawshaw Street but plans to turn the old site into a car park have so far failed to materialise.
The plans have left concerned traders and councillors worrying about the town centre’s future.
A spokesman for Peter’s Jewellers, in Blackburn Road, said: “This could be the final nail in the coffin. We have a lot of older customers who would have to find their way across town to find us. Our footfall would drop and the pattern through town would change.
“A 10 to 15 per cent drop in trade would finish us as a business, and you can easily see that happening.
“We could not move, we would have to close down. We don’t have the funds to relocate and a lot of businesses would say that.
“We have heard nothing from the council but we have passed our concerns on to the Chamber of Commerce.”
Earlier in the year, a survey of 50 town centre shops revealed just three agree with plans for the new bus station.
Michael Whewells is a co-director at Whewells’ Toolbox, in Bridge Street.
He said: “Crawshaw Street has a 50-space car park which will be lost when the bus station is built. How many spaces will be created in Peel Street? Can the council allow more on-street parking to make it easier for shoppers? Those are questions that need to be answered.”
Leader of Hyndburn Council, Miles Parkinson, said draft drawings had been drawn up, but stopped short of saying traders shouldn’t worry.
He said: “There’s going to be additional parking and possibly a taxi rank. What needs to happen first is the new bus station. We are drafting drawings for the car park.”
Parking for customers along Blackburn Road was also being discussed, Coun Parkinson added.
Opposition leader, Peter Britcliffe, said shops around the existing bus station are ‘all very fragile’.
He said: I don’t think the council has considered shops. There has been very little care or thought. I spoke to a market trader and she said if they move the bus station, they are finished.
“There was a great need to have a real plan in place, and I don’t feel it’s there.”
Work is set to begin on the new bus station next year as part of a £40m transport project in East Lancashire.
Comments are closed on this article.