Frustrated Port Talbot traders say council are making decisions "behind closed doors"
FRUSTRATED traders in Port Talbot have hit out at the council for making decisions concerning the town “behind closed doors”.
It follows changes being made to free Christmas parking and the Christmas lighting situation.
This year free festive parking will only be available at the council’s short-stay car parks.
Christmas lights were going to be scaled back by the authority, but last week it was decided not to cut the light provision, although lighting may be withdrawn in 2014.
President of Port Talbot Chamber of Trade Steve Garvey said: “I don’t like meetings behind closed doors.
“Decisions are being made without any consultation. We are finding that more and more.”
Mr Garvey said traders from the newly-formed chamber should have been approached before the decision about car parking was made.
“We should have been in negotiation with them,” he said.
Traders said they were confused about which car parks would be free. One trader said: “Is it going to be the first four hours in all the car parks?”
Mr Redmore said: “Because we have not heard it from the horse’s mouth we need to determine which is which.
“We all need to get clarification and will report it back.”
A council spokesman said: “Free car parking at Christmas is provided entirely at the council’s discretion and we are pleased this year to be in a position to offer this in our short stay car parks from 10.30am onwards from Saturday, December 14 to Tuesday, December 24.
“The council is happy to meet Port Talbot Chamber of Trade to discuss the savings proposals under consideration or any other matters that affect the town.”
He added that free Christmas parking will apply to all other car parks in Port Talbot — Bethany Square, St Mary’s and the multi-storey car park.
Parking charges will still apply between 8am and 10.30am.