Two East London businessmen fight over parking space
POLICE were called to keep the peace after a signage feud between two East London businesses became confrontational yesterday with one business parking in front of the other.
PG Aluminium owner Andre Smith claimed Border Glass, his neighbouring business on the other side of Bowls Road, had last week deliberately parked their signagewrapped vehicle under his sign on three occasions.
Yesterday Smith retaliated by parking his vehicle in front of the Border Glass door in protest against the “arrogance” of his neighbour. Smith then called the Daily Dispatch and complained that Border Glass owner Barry Becker used the “f-word” and told him to go back to Queenstown.
“This is not the way to do business. Parking under my sign like that [last week] was like klapping me in the face, so I said let’s just do it back and see what he does to me – and he blows [loses his temper].”
Border Glass owner Barry Becker denied his vehicles were deliberately parked under Smith’s signage.
Becker admitted he used rough language yesterday morning, saying: “I’m not an antagonistic guy, but if you park like that, then sorry, you are taking me on.”
Police arrived on the scene and asked both parties to calm down. Smith removed his vehicle.
Yesterday there were empty bays on Smith’s side of the road in front of the large PG Glass building, which shut recently.
Smith said his PG Aluminium franchise was separate and independent of the PG Glass franchise group.
Border-kei Chamber of Business executive director Les Holbrook said: “Competition in business is inevitable, but when it is carried across into intimidation and unpleasantness, then it is not good for business. Customers prefer not to be associated with this kind of conduct.” — firstname.lastname@example.org