RETAILERS and councillors discussed ideas to revive Lancing’s shopping area, including easing parking restrictions.
At the Lancing and Sompting Community Link meeting, parish, district and county councillors, along with the public, assembled at Lancing Village Hall to discuss local issues.
Chairman Lionel Parsons said shop owners were concerned about a number of issues, including parking and business rates.
“The double yellow lines outside HSBC are going to be removed, which will give us a couple more car parking spaces,” he said.
Mr Parsons also suggested introducing parking discs, like those used in Steyning High Street car park.
Owner of The Railway Station Cafeteria in Station Parade, South Street, Tony Andrews said parking restrictions had been affecting his business.
“They’re being harassed, as soon as they pull in the traffic warden moves in on them,” he said.
Clerk John Tolhurst said parking issues were not helping to bring trade into Lancing and it was ‘destroying’ the atmosphere.
Gina Scotting, of Sompting Parish Council, said independent shops were setting up in Steyning to draw in shoppers.
“Lancing isn’t going to have any trade. You’re not going to do all your shopping in six charity shops,” she said.
Chairman of Manor ward panel, Ken Carr, owned a shop in Lancing from 1964 to 2000.
“In the early days, Lancing was a thriving village. You had four butchers, fish shops, the lot,” he said.
“I’m afraid the downfall with Lancing started with Lyons Farm [in Worthing], and the nail in the coffin was Holmbush [in Shoreham].”
Mrs Scotting said the village should encourage entrepreneurial people to come in because people do not want to see the exact same shops everywhere.
“There’s got to be someone out there with ideas, and it would be nice to walk into the village and buy a present, a nice pair of shoes or an item of clothing, but we do need the encouragement.”
Chairman of Adur District Council Fred Lewis said it is the landlords who own the properties that raise the rent, which forces out traders.
Community Link councillors are now looking to extend parking times in Lancing from one hour to two.