Superstore under fire from council over parking

The new Asda supermarket opened in October
The new Asda supermarket opened in October

A town centre supermarket has come under fire for failing to charge for parking.

Asda, which opened new premises in Chorley town centre in October, was told that it must charge people for parking via pay and display machines, as part of the conditions of its planning permission,

But the machines have been covered up and declared ‘out of order.’

Coun Peter Wilson, deputy leader of Chorley Council, said: “As soon as we were informed of the situation we took action to investigate it.

“They’ve already got the pay and display machines in place, we want them brought into use immediately.

“They have implemented some parking restrictions in that they have introduced automated number plate recognition to prevent people parking there for more than three hours, but it’s important to have consistency across the town centre car parks and Asda were aware of this.

“They know that by not charging for parking, they are breaching their planning permission and we’ve raised that with them, so we expect them to comply.”

An Asda spokesman said: “We believe we have met the planning obligations imposed by the council and will continue to discuss any concerns they have.”

It isn’t the first time that the supermarket has come under criticism.

Supermarket bosses had to apologise for a sign stunt just hours after opening the new multi-million pound store two months ago.

Complaints flooded in after Asda sprayed temporary direction signs - including in a town centre conservation area - to the new store on roads and pavements without permission.

Asda was ordered to remove the green chalk by both Chorley and Lancashire County councils.

Some town centre traders and residents were upset with Asda, showing their anger through social media. Staff at Wilcock and Sons hardware store, Chapel Street, cleaned away signs outside their shop and on nearby St George’s Street.