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Lynn shop owners rally against road plans

Owners of shops and businesses along a stretch of London Road are up in arms after learning that parking bays outside their premises could be removed.

They say that without them their businesses will not be viable and they could have to close and lose their livelihoods.

Officials have said there are no imminent plans but the worried shop owners are not convinced and have already launched a petition demanding the parking facilities stay.

London Road Shops parking issues..Shop owners (LtoR), Mandy Bahar (The Daily Grind), Siva Nadarajan (Stop N Go), Robin Talbot (Tranquility).. (48034314)
London Road Shops parking issues..Shop owners (LtoR), Mandy Bahar (The Daily Grind), Siva Nadarajan (Stop N Go), Robin Talbot (Tranquility).. (48034314)

“We will fight this all the way” said Mandy Bahar, who sold her house five years ago to start the Daily Grind Cafe on London Road.

“We all rely on customers and delivery drivers being able to park outside.”

There are eight shops and businesses on London Road close to the South Gate, including a post office, and a similar number of 30-minute parking bays.

The possibility they might be removed was muted in the Southgates masterplan which is looking at changing the road layout at the southern end of London Road.

The shop owners claim that they have just been made aware of proposals which could affect parking arrangements

Mandy Bahar described it as “sneaky” and said they only found out about it last week.

“The outside parking was one reason why I chose to come here. I get a lot of passing trade and the business has been thriving, like everyone else along here. With no parking I would probably have to close.”

Tranquility, at number 50, is a crystal, holistic and new age shop run by Robin and Bernice Talbot for the last three years.

Robin said: “This is a unique shop and we have customers drive to us from a long way away. If we lose these bays we lose viability. It is as simple as that.”

He also claims that the single line relating to the future of the parking bays is “squirrelled away” in the masterplan documents.

Residents views were made clear at a meeting of the local Regeneration Panel this week when the South Gate changes were discussed.

Ward councillor Lesley Bambridge told the panel: “We cannot ruin these businesses.”

Earlier she had said that she would be very unhappy if the bays were removed and commented that the plans seemed to be more about people coming into and out of the town rather than looking after the residents.

An officer told the panel there were no plans to change the present parking arrangements, saying: "None of them are anywhere near being implemented."

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