'No plans' for cameras at Newport Waitrose despite planning application
There are no immediate plans for parking cameras at Newport’s Waitrose, despite the popular chain applying for planning permission.
John Lewis and Partners, the supermarket chain’s parent company, said it was applying to Telford & Wrekin Council for permission to install the cameras in case it wanted to do so in the future.
Newport Town Council has not objected to the Waitrose plan, but has asked for clarification to alleviate potential conflict between the store and its customers. The car park is currently free to use.
It comes weeks after Councillor Tim Nelson,. who represents the town’s North and West Ward on Telford & Wrekin Council, asked residents to make themselves familiar with automatic number plate recognition cameras and to make any concerns known to the town council.
A Waitrose and Partners spokesperson said the store is “not making any changes at this time” but has applied for permission “to understand if this might be an option in the future.” to help us improve how we manage the car park.”
A design statement, prepared by Geoffrey Ansell from Farrell and Clark Architects on behalf of the company, says: “This car park is primarily for Waitrose use and is maintained and managed by Waitrose. The new ANPR camera, which is located at the entrance to the car park, will deter the public from abusing the car park for other uses and maintain the car park primarily for Waitrose customers. It will also improve security by monitoring vehicles entering and leaving the site.”
Mr Ansell adds that the company is asking for permission to site the five-metre metallic pole on an existing kerbed traffic island, as this will protect the camera from vehicles as well as providing a convenient position to cover both entry and exit lanes. It would also be fitted with anti-climb spikes to prevent possible tampering with the camera.
Newport Town Council’s planning and economic development committee decided to support the application at a recent meeting, but, in a statement, advised that “to alleviate potential conflict between shoppers, employees and charging authority” any rules and restrictions that apply “will need to be made very clear and publicised for those using the car park”. It adds: “Members raised no objection in principle as this application is on privately-owned land, not on the public highway, not in any immediate proximity to a residential area, and the car park will remain free of charge.”
A Waitrose and Partners spokesperson said: “We are not making any changes at this time. However, we have submitted a planning application for an ANPR system to understand if this might be an option in the future to help us improve how we manage the car park.”
Telford and Wrekin Council’s planning department will make a decision at a later date.