Traders anger as Brent Council use crime prevention cameras to issue parking tickets in Willesden

PUBLISHED: 12:43 20 February 2014 | UPDATED: 12:44 20 February 2014

Willesden High Road traders claim the measure has had a

Willesden High Road traders claim the measure has had a "drastic" impact on their businesses (pic credit: Jan Nevill)

Copyright: Mr. Jan Nevill

Furious traders have accused the council of ‘pulling the wool over their eyes’ by using crime prevention cameras to enforce parking tickets.

The 'crime enforcement' cameras are being used to issue tickets to drivers (pic credit: Jan Nevill)The 'crime enforcement' cameras are being used to issue tickets to drivers (pic credit: Jan Nevill)

Business owners in Willesden High Road claim customers has been driven away after receiving parking fines through their letterboxes after shopping in the area.

Kalyan Patel, who owns a vegetarian takeaway, said: “We have been completely misled. I feel that they (the council) have pulled the wool over our eyes.

They promised the cameras were only going to be used for crime prevention, not parking enforcement.

“If you come into my restaurant in the afternoon it is dead and this is mainly due to customer being scared of or is unable to find parking in the area.

“They council say they care about high street business but they penalise people for parking outside our shops on single yellows for a few minutes during off peak times, and use crime cameras to enforce the tickets.”

Tony Antoniou MBE, who chairs Traders Association Willesden Green and owns Hairways on the High Road, said the area was becoming a ghost town.

He added: “Business is getting worse and worse because of the parking measures in the area.

“Hand on heart invoices has gone down by 40 per cent and is largely due to parking issues.

“People are afraid of parking for a few minutes. All we are asking for is a 15-20 grace period to all customers quickly pop into our stores.”

David Thrale, head of Safer Street in Brent Council said the cameras are there primarily for crime prevention but are also used to ensure traffic moves freely and help improve road safety.

He added: “The parking restrictions are designed to strike the right balance between keeping traffic moving and supporting local businesses.

Drivers who adhere to the restrictions won’t get a Penalty Charge Notice.”

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