Free parking would pave the way for a merry Christmas for retailers and customers alike

by Rose Barrett
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Christmas Swords

Local authorities across Ireland should follow the lead of Fingal County Council (FCC) in making street parking free before Christmas, says Fine Gael Senator Regina Doherty. 

Senator Doherty said the initiative by FCC providing free street parking on Saturdays in December was a great step to encourage more people into the area to shop.

“For towns like Balbriggan, Swords, and Skerriesn this initiative had a major impact and should be replicated elsewhere.”

Senator Regina Doherty
Fine Gael Senator Regina Doherty

With only one weekend left before Christmas, Senator Doherty encourages other local authorities to introduce and expand free parking over the coming week.

She continued:: “Currently in some city and town centres shoppers can avail of free parking at specific times, but often, these free parking hours fall outside of shops opening hours.

“The extension of free parking would show a deep understanding of the needs of local businesses and consumers during the busy Christmas period. We need to encourage people to make the best of our local areas this time of year.

“Although already adopted by many local authorities across the country, I encourage other city councils and private car park operators across Ireland to join in these efforts. The positive impact seen in Fingal can be emulated in other areas, aiming to boost footfall and support local trade.

“Free parking during this peak shopping season is not just peace of mind for shoppers; it’s a support for local businesses across the county that play a vital role in creating jobs and contributing to the vibrancy of our towns and villages.

“When we encourage initiatives such as these, we’re not only supporting the businesses that make our towns and communities so unique during the festive season, but we’re also investing in their future.

“It’s essential that we get creative in looking for ways to support our local economies, and I strongly advocate for a nationwide adoption of this initiative, encouraging councils and private operators across Ireland to consider similar measures.” concluded Senator Doherty

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