Car parking shake-up ‘will kill off the market’

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STALLHOLDERS from the antiques market in Hemel Hempstead fear a stricter parking regime is part of efforts to kill it off.

Last week council bosses started enforcing rules that mean traders cannot leave their vehicles in the Market Square and many are voting with their feet.

Ray Pettiford, who has been going to the Wednesday market for more than 10 years, said: “There was hardly anyone there and the ones who were there said they would not be coming back. I think it’s so sad.”

Another punter Bill Sims said: “I can’t help but feel there is a hidden agenda from the council to do away with the market. They’re trying to kill the market.”

Dacorum Borough Council says planters, seats and a maze are being introduced and there will not be room for vehicles in the square, but traders will be offered parking nearby. A spokesman said: “We are enforcing the no-parking rule so there is space for all of the existing traders to continue to trade from the square.”