Car park restriction signs at Totterdown Square to be removed

TRESA has been informed that the signs attached to Tesco in Totterdown Square, indicating that a £70 parking charge will be incurred by those who park for longer than 30 minutes, are to be removed.

TRESA Vice-Chair, Suzanne Audrey, has been asking for clarification about the signs since they appeared, as it was our understanding that Tesco did not own or manage the car park. Initially Tesco customer services responded to our enquiries by stating: “it is indeed a Tesco owned car park. The restrictions are in place so to discourage local residents and employees from other business from using the car park. As you could imagine we need these spaces for the large turnover of customers throughout the day.”

But TRESA was not content to accept that response.

TRESA supports local businesses and we were concerned the restrictions might affect trade at Florence and Asia Garden, where customers might wish to sit and enjoy a meal without the threat of a hefty car park fine. Furthermore, 30 minutes may not be long enough for those who are slower on their feet, have a lot of shopping to do, or want to call in to more than one shop. And, as a local shopping centre, some people may simply wish to spend time chatting to neighbours and friends.

We investigated further, asking for confirmation that Tesco had definitely taken over management of the whole car park. In response, we were pleased to receive the following email from the local store manager: “I have been in contact with our property manager who has stated that we do not own or manage the car park in any way. I have forwarded this onto the car park operations manager who has told me that contractors will be out as soon as possible to remove the signage. Apologises for any inconvenience this has caused.”

TRESA would like to make it clear that we have received support from our local Tesco over the years, and we have found the staff to be friendly and helpful. We do not believe they are to blame for this confusion.

We look forward to seeing the signs removed as soon as possible.

(But, if they are not, we will continue to press for their removal!)

2 Comments

  1. If nobody owns it though, I guess it could be used for people living in vans. Or convenient parking if people are travelling from temple meads, or working in town. Leaving their vehicles there either all day, or for long periods at a time. Living in bushy park, this doesn’t particularly inconvenience me – but it could for people who need to use the car park to use local facilities. I have sometimes struggled to get parking there, if I popped into tesco on my way home.

    1. Thanks for getting in touch. The whole site, including the car park, is owned by a company that is not Bristol based. All the businesses pay a service charge for site maintenance and for use of the car park by their customers. The signs implied that the whole car park was owned or managed by Tesco, and a fine would be imposed on anyone staying over 30 minutes. That would cause problems for the other businesses, and for any customers who want to stay longer if they are slower on their feet and need to take longer shopping, or those who want to stop and have a coffee or a meal. We also believe people are entitled to stop and chat for a while in a neighbourhood shopping area!
      But you are right – there is the potential for abuse of the car park. There have been some discussions with the site manager about what restrictions would be reasonable, for example, free parking restricted to two hours between 7.00am and 7.00pm. Do you have any thoughts on what restrictions would be fair and would meet the needs of all the businesses and their customers?

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