Tesco to cut free parking by an hour at Hanley store
SUPERMARKET giant Tesco has cut the three-hour free parking restrictions at its Hanley store – to help free up spaces for shoppers.
The move means motorists can now only park for a maximum of two hours at the city centre store.
It follows complaints from customers that they were struggling to find empty spaces on the 750-space car park.
A notice to customers states: "To improve car park space availability at the store, customers will be able to park for a maximum of two hours."
But the move has angered Tesco customers who fear they will not have long enough to shop and other drivers who park at the store to avoid Hanley's parking charges.
Shopper Carol Lander, aged 63, ofNorton, said: "There is no way I could do a big shop in two hours – I would be constantly keeping an eye on the clock.
"If I had to rush I would probably end up forgetting half of what I went in for."
Angela Hall, aged 56, of Nursery Avenue, Baddeley Green, added: "I have never seen drivers having to wait for a space.
"It is probably something to do with the fact that people park at Tesco and then go into Hanley and they want to stop it."
Free parking was limited to just 30 minutes when the store opened in 2010. Motorists who stayed on the car park for a maximum of three hours had to spend £5 in the store to qualify for free parking.
But barriers in and out of the car park were removed to create a three-hour parking free-for-all as shoppers shunned pay-and-display car parks.
Motorist Ann Farnell, aged 64, of Loggerheads, said: "If people want to nip into Hanley they won't have enough time to do everything and will start shopping at places like Festival Park. Tesco will lose out."
George Daniels, aged 27, of Leek Road, Hanley, added: "People don't pay to park in Hanley anymore, but that's the council's fault for making it so expensive."
Tesco said it had listened to customers' concerns.
A Tesco spokesman said: "We understand it can be a bit of a struggle for customers to find a space in our car park sometimes. In response, we are asking that people use the car park for two hours. This will hopefully mean there are more spaces available for those customers shopping in the store."
Tesco will use number plate recognition cameras to enforce the changes.