Councillor back in the firing line.
Byline: ANDREW ROBINSON firstname.lastname@example.org @Andrew_Examiner
A COUNCILLOR has come under withering criticism for suggesting that town centre congestion caused by larger Huddersfield Town attendances could be putting shoppers off. Veteran Labour councillor Peter McBride told a recent meeting that heavy ring road traffic on Saturdays, due to bigger home crowds, could be deterring shoppers.
Clr McBride told struggling town centre traders he does not believe controversial bus gates are killing businesses.
He said a number of firms were investing in the town centre and there was "no evidence" bus gates were causing a problem.
"Some people are saying it's because Town are getting 20,000 fans now and it's stopping people going into town. But there's no evidence that business is down because of bus gates."
Around 200 comments were posted on the Examiner's Facebook in response to the councillor's statement.
Sandra Leake said: "Try improving parking facilities and a better selection of shops.
"Last time I went into town I was embarrassed to think this was my home town - it is looking very run down with too many cheap tacky shops. Do not try to pass the blame to football supporters; this council has killed Huddersfield."
Becky Smith said: "Lack of decent places to shop more like. Couldn't find what I wanted - went to Meadowhall and found it. Hardly any decent men's clothes shops that aren't stupidly expensive and you're constantly hassled by people from charities trying to get you to sign up. Nothing appealing about town any more."
Jamie Megson said: "You're PS30 up from this Town fan seeing as I went to pick my dad up from the town centre and it cost me that for driving in a bus lane.
"Half the town centre is a bus lane at the minute with no parking and if you ever do find a spot the shops are a disgrace. I've been in once in four years and likely to be that long again before I go back."
Elizabeth Bower said: "I think it's probably more down to the fact that there are no shops worth visiting."
Sarah Jones commented: "I think it's more likely down to the stupid bus gates and the vast number of empty shops because the rents (are) through the roof! Always looking to pass the book."
Jonny Haigh said: "Dear Kirklees, please listen to your public. And stop making it hard to get into the town centre, other than by bus. Let's get Huddersfield back on the map."
Matt Taylor said: "I've been watching the Terriers for years but wouldn't dream of doing my shopping in town as it's a dump and those bus gates are a draconian idea. Being dragged off to the Trafford Centre is preferable."
Sam Farnell said: "The removal of the St Andrew's road car park means fans are forced to park in the town centre. Shoppers are bound to feel it as it will have a knock-on effect."