Good news - the parking restrictions at Eddisbury Square have been lifted. Modified restrictions will be reintroduced on 24 February.
I had a long conversation this evening with one of the Mason Partners LLP partners. Mason Partners manage the Square at a strategic level for the owners - they are not the agents involved in devising the parking management scheme, nor are they the company managing the car park at the moment. The partner has got involved as both Mason Partners and the land owners were monitoring our disquiet in Frodsham - and they felt they had to intervene.
The conversation was good natured. I received an apology from Mason Partners to all of us in Frodsham - given on behalf of the owners for what has occurred. They have assured me they did not intend to use a 'sledge hammer to crack this particular nut.'
I have agreed to meet with him later on this month to discuss how car parking can be managed in Eddisbury Square in a way that chimes with the community. I am sure we all accept that the private land owners are entitled to restrict car parking to 2 hours. I am told no one has been fined for parking on the Square and shopping elsewhere in Frodsham - and they intend that the new regime won't either.
I have asked for all car parking penalties so far paid to be refunded and all existing demands for payment be cancelled. I envisage that I will have continuing discussions on this point next week.
The discussions I intend to have will talk about what 'fair and reasonable' enforcement looks like in Frodsham. I will also take the discussions on to how we can all work together to promote the Square and retail in Frodsham together. We all want a successful Frodsham and a successful Square. I also agree with Mason Owen that we need to ensure that the tenants at the Square don't end up paying for this either!
Incidentally I had drafted a letter to the Chief Executive of Sainsbury - it was ready to go - but doesn't need to go now. I gather Sainsbury are also pleased that steps are being taken to calm things down.
So it is good news for now - but there is still work to do.
I did take the opportunity to give my views on the other agents who have been involved!
[Note text edited on 10/2/14 - correcting name of the Property agents to Mason Partners LLP]