Barnet's traders in particular will be grinding their teeth at the callous indifference shown to their plight by Barnet's Tory council this Christmas.
Foregoing the 'amnesty' on parking charges in the borough, which they have implemented in previous years, the Tories have ploughed ahead with raising parking charges and made sure that a council debate on parking, called for by the Labour group, will now take place in late January when most of the damage has already been done.
The Labour Party are collecting signatures for a petition which could lead to a further council debate... in March. That's a fair way off, but it would shine a very unwelcome light on the Tories' policy in time for the GLA elections in May when incumbent Brian Coleman, the mastermind (I use the term loosely) of the parking policy, is hoping against hope to be re-elected as the representative for Barnet and Camden.
The Labour Party petition, hosted on the council's own website, says:
We, the undersigned, request Barnet council to reverse the parking charge increases implemented in 2011 that are having such a damaging impact on our local town centres and residents at a time when they can least afford it. We need action now to help small businesses and relieve residents. We believe that reversing the parking charges will increase the number of shoppers in our town centres, giving struggling local businesses and traders a much needed boost and helping our hard-pressed residents in these difficult economic times.Sign the petition here.