Parliamentary candidate Cllr David Kendall has slammed Tory-controlled Brentwood Borough Council for not giving more help to the retailers in Brentwood High Street who are battling to stay afloat during a very difficult trading period.
There are now nine empty shops in the High Street and there are strong rumours that Pizza Hut and Curry's are due to close shortly and the future of the Argos store is in doubt.
Brentwood's Liberal Democrats recently called for the first hour of car parking to be made free in all the town centre car parks as part of a one year pilot scheme to revitalise the local economy but the move was rejected out of hand by the Conservative administration.
The Liberal Democrats also want to see more help from central government to ensure that High Streets like Brentwood's remain at the heart of our community: The Lib Dem national plans include:
Cllr David Kendall said:
"Brentwood High Street retailers need help from the Borough Council now if many of them are going to survive, not sometime in the future.
"Our proposal to provide the first hour of car parking free would make a real difference because it would send a clear signal to local residents and visitors that "Brentwood is open for business" again after all the upheaval of the High Street refurbishment.
"Sadly at a local and a national level the Tories seem content to sit on their hands and do nothing while retailers and businesses are crying out for action to be taken to revitalise the economy".