Edinburgh West MP Mike Crockart believes more could be done to help boost trade for local businesses in Queensferry.
The MP recently spent a day in Queensferry as part of a business tour of his constituency. He met with local businesses and the challenges they face.
He said: ‘‘I visited Queensferry on a cruise day. I’ve been involved with Queensferry Ambition since its beginnings and was very keen to spend the day working with Cruise Forth and local businesses to see the visitor operation in full swing.
‘‘The biggest issue is parking. The day I visited, a huge area was cordoned off for coaches to pick up passengers from the MSC Magnifica.
‘‘The cordon remained in place the entire day in spite of the fact that the coaches were only needed for around 15 minutes for pick up and drop off. ‘‘The area remained empty in spite of there being very limited space for those visiting by car. The situation needs to change if local businesses are to capitalise on tourism.’’
The MP added: “I’m not saying that the coaches are not accommodated and encouraged, but the amount of space dedicated to them does little to benefit the town and encourage tourists who would, if they could park, spend time and money with local businesses.
‘‘Queensferry has excellent shops, cafes, hotels and restaurants. It even has a museum which I’m sure would attract many more visitors with an extension of opening hours.
‘‘Visitors get a warm welcome from locals and businesses alike but the council facilities – the basics of every tourist town – need attention.’’