Risk of clamping cut for shoppers

SHOPPERS in Wallsend are being given extra time to make their purchases now wheel-clampers have been told to curb their enthusiasm.

NewRiver Retail, owner of the town’s Forum Shopping Centre, has taken on board concerns voiced by customers about the number of wheel-clampings carried out by a company acting on behalf of the current holder of the lease for the centre’s car park.

Although London-based NewRiver Retail owns the Forum, it inherited the car park with a contractual lease to the Robertson Group already in place.

A spokesman for New-River said: “We are aware that a more aggressive clamping policy has been introduced recently and have received complaints about the operations of a company carrying out the clamping called Lockwood Security Management UK.

“Although acting within the law as it stands at the moment, we have made it clear that we feel that Lockwood has been operating the car park in an inflexible manner.

“As a result, we have persuaded Robertson to increase the grace period to ten minutes for those customers without a ticket and requiring change and 15 minutes for those customers who have purchased a ticket that has expired.

“We are also putting up more signs at the entrance to the shopping centre to do our best to ensure that customers are aware that there is a risk of clamping if they do not have a valid car parking ticket.

“We strongly recommend that users of the car park ensure that they have paid the correct amount.

“We do not approve of clamping, and we sympathise with those that have been subjected to it.”