Lyndhurst traders request freeze on ice cream van licence from Forestry England
LYNDHURST traders have urged Forestry England not to renew a licence allowing an ice cream van to operate at Bolton’s Bench.
Claiming the vehicle discourages customers from spending money in the village shops, Lyndhurst district councillor Hilary Brand warned the High Street was already facing many challenges.
As reported in the A&T, the issue was raised at the Verderers’ Court in June 2022, when it emerged Forestry England had granted the ice cream van a two-year licence to operate in the car park of the New Forest beauty spot.
Addressing the latest court, Cllr Brand said: “We came here two years ago and asked for the licence not to be renewed.
”We have had four businesses close in Lyndhurst in the last four months – it is very difficult for everyone at the moment and anything that takes people away from visiting the High Street will damage Lyndhurst even further.”
Pointing out that the butchers, a coffee shop called Surfing Moo’s and Prezzo had all closed in recent months, Cllr Brand warned: “You walk down the High Street and you will just see loads of empty shops.”
The request was echoed by Tim Laine, the proprietor of Forest Glade Ice Cream, who claimed the ice cream van had significantly affected the turnover of a number of established village shops.
He added: “This van pays no rates to the local council, doesn’t belong to the local Chamber of Commerce and makes no contribution to local events and the community of Lyndhurst.”
It was also claimed the van keeps its engine running continuously, adding to the already significant air pollution problems in the village.