A YOGA enthusiast has called for more flexible parking in Halstead High Street to help boost town centre trade.

Drivers can park for up to an hour free of charge in 58 on-street spaces along High Street, however Anne Spooner-Kargotis, 63, says shoppers are put off visiting the town due to the strict rules after that.

She said: “I am not saying the parking needs to be free, if you could pay to stay longer than an hour perhaps using a flexible phone system it would be better.

“Lots of people I know have been given parking tickets.

“One of my friends was in the hairdresser, she saw a parking attendant by her car so she had to run out and move it with foils in her hair.

“There needs to be a system whereby people can park without worrying about fines.” Mrs Spooner-Kargotis, of Broad Road, believes she is better off visiting Braintree to avoid having to pay parking fines.

She said: “An hour is no good to anyone if you are doing some shopping.

“My yoga class already last an hour-and-a-half, and then there is no time to do anything else like get a coffee with friends afterwards.

“There are two or three big new estates being built, which means there will be more people.

“The retailers could benefit from these new residents, but not if they can’t park for longer than an hour in the high street.”

A spokesman for the North Essex Parking Partnership said: “If someone believes that a request to change a waiting restriction is appropriate, then an application demonstrating sufficient support can be made through our website and it will be considered by the joint parking committee.”