On the first day of 2020 business Simon Ford of Havering Local Business was very upset to hear the news that of one of Havering’s oldest bookstores Swan Books of Upminster, are closing their doors on Saturday 18th of January 2020.
Swan Books have been voicing their concerns over the scrapping of the free half an hour parking outside their Upminster shop since the free 30 minutes was scrapped in July 2019.
Local businesses have been complaining to Havering Council about the scrapping of the free thirty minutes but they still do not listen. Councillor Damian White would have been an MP for Dagenham and Rainham if the Council Leader had actually listened to the business owners of Havering.
Last August Councillor Damian White stormed out of Upminster Library opposite Swan Books following a large protest outside of the library by local residents and shopkeepers. That was just half an hour into a one to one surgery as he simply did not want to listen and had a theatre show in the west end to attend.
Councillor Osman Dervish said:
“It is sad to see the closure of any of our local businesses. Since the new parking charges have been introduced, we have been talking with local businesses as to how we can support them where possible.
“Free parking was introduced at weekends leading up to and over Christmas and New Year ( Free Parking was only in Council Car Park not street parking) and we have also launched a campaign promoting local businesses to encourage residents to shop local.
“We continue to listen to concerns from residents and businesses on the impact of the parking charges and will be working together with them to find a long-term solution.”
Simon Ford of Havering Local Business added:
“Conservative Councillors of Havering Council have listened and had chosen not to do anything about the scrapping of the 30 minutes parking.”
Members of the public were entering Swan Books to inform staff how sad and upset they were that the book shop was finally closing its doors after 83 years of trading.
Staff at the store were keen to ask locals to come out and support their high street shop locally.
Local resident Frankie from Hornchurch told the Havering Daily:
“I’m really sad to see that the book shop is closing its doors. I bought all my school books here and my university books, this book shop has always been part of our community.
“It’s a very sad day.”