TOWN officials believe people will return to Wrexham despite admitting their move to increase car parking charges has led to a drop in footfall.
Town centre manager Isobel Garner said there was always likely to be a settling down period when the new charges were introduced at the start of February.
Some people, they say, might make a judgment to stay away out of principle, but would then come back after a while.
It was also revealed at last night’s Wrexham’s Town Centre Forum meeting that during a two-month public consultation on car parking, parking services co-ordinator Joanne Rodgers had received only five responses in objection to the increases, none of which came from any of Wrexham’s town centre businesses.
Ms Rodgers said: “It is all well and good businesses raising the issue now but when the charges went out to public consultation I received five responses in objection to the increases, and not one of those was from a town centre business.
“I am happy to hear from traders, businesses and people who use the car parks. And feedback on the changes is welcomed.
“However, during February there is traditionally a drop in usage of our car parks and I would urge people to look again at this issue in a few weeks once the new charges have settled down.”
Ms Garner said: “Inevitably when a decision like this takes place there is going to be a settling down period – especially when the weather is bad and it’s so soon after Christmas.
“Some people make an instant judgment, decide to refuse to pay the extra, and stay away out of principle for a bit, but then they will then come back.
“People will eventually return to Wrexham.”
Cllr Bob Dutton, a member of the Wrexham Council executive, said the objections were disappointing and it was a shame town centre business did not take the trouble to write to the council at the time when comments on the proposals were being encouraged.
Forum chairman Kevin Critchley, Eagles Meadow manager, also revealed he had had a very limited response to the idea of a scheme whereby motorists could get money off their parking by spending a certain amount in nominated stores.
More than 40 businesses on Hope Street and Island Green were canvassed, with three expressing an interest and only one saying they would support the idea.
Mr Critchley said: “Having canvassed over 40 businesses in the area, it would seem this scheme just does not have legs in Wrexham town centre.”