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Vicarage Field Shopping Centre gives key workers free parking

Vicarage Field’s entrance in Station Parade (credit: Google Maps)

A shopping centre in Barking has allocated car parking spaces so key workers can park for free.

Vicarage Field is making 150 parking permits available free of charge, meaning essential staff can park there 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Jonathan Ratnage from Benson Elliot, the company which owns Vicarage Field, said: “We are in unprecedented times and it’s absolutely vital that we all work together in these extreme circumstances.

“Barking has a fantastic community spirit, and we totally appreciate the difficult and testing working conditions the key workers find themselves in with our fight against COVID-19.”

The spaces are available for any key workers, whether they are working locally or commuting long distances. 

Local firm 2012 Security will carry out regular overnight patrols to ensure that everyone is kept safe.

Those eligible for the scheme are asked to register their interest from tomorrow, Wednesday, 25 March, by visiting vfbarking.co.uk

Meanwhile, Vicarage Field has confirmed that most shops in its centre have temporarily closed, following the advice issued by Prime Minister Boris Johnson last night.

The exceptions are B&M, which sells food produce; the Post Office; Spectacle World; and Holland & Barrett.

Simon Greene, the centre director for Vicarage Field, said: “These are difficult times and we’ve been working hard to come up with a solution to make sure these vital stores can remain open, while protecting our valued team members and visitors.

“Unfortunately, trading hours are restricted and we can’t offer public toilet facilities or interchange between levels. I apologise for this.”

For more on this story, and the latest on our other local and national news, listen to Time 107.5FM

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