These fines amounted to just over £326m. With London, or parts of London, taking the lion’s share; the top four revenue generators included Westminster City Council, and the London Boroughs of Hammersmith & Fulham, Islington, and Newham. They pocketed nearly £55m between them.
With that said, it was Manchester City Council that issued the largest number of PCNs – 598,060 in total, Westminster City Council were second on the list, issuing just over half of Manchester’s total – 313,012.
74% of appellants that fought the ticket (approximately 2,664,000 motorists) either paid a reduced amount, or nothing at all. You’d have to wonder – how valid are the methods & processes when it comes to issuing a ticket, if so many are overturned on appeal? Such a widescale problem is this, that around 48% of all UK motorists have been hit with a PCN at some point.
For many motorists, the issue is signage, or to be more precise, unclear signage; three out of ten drivers who appealed against the PCN fine blamed unclear, misleading signage for the problem, and with the fines being overturned by the governing body, you’d think they have a point.
Amanda Stretton, motoring editor for Confused.com says: “The fact that almost three quarters of PCN appeals were successful last year suggests that some fines are being issued unfairly. With councils raking in over £326m in PCNs, it’s only right that some of this fine money is invested to help make road signs clearer to eliminate the number of fines being distributed unfairly”.
The whole attitude to this kind of problem is represented perfectly by independent adjudicators when they were asked to investigate numerous problems relating to PCNs within the City of Coventry. The independent adjudicators stated: “Yet Coventry City Council, seemingly with a determination and delusion reminiscent of King Canute himself, has continued to enforce PCNs”.
The council were advised many times to change the confusing or misleading signs relating to parking restrictions but refused to act, stating that they complied with regulations. Effectively, they’d done the bare minimum to comply, and numbers of PCNs rocketed thanks to their in-action. Bloody-mindedness or budgetary choice?
The price of PCNs
It’s a lazy argument to trot out the ‘cash cow’ phrase too often when it comes to motoring expenses, fines and taxes, either direct or stealthily, but there does seem as though there is a genuine argument for tighter controls to be put in place for the issuing of PCNs; perhaps instead of being enforced locally, it should be a national body that distributes the wealth based on performance?
How many appeals won, against PCNs issued would be a great starting point – it would certainly force the councils to play on a more level playing field by updating their signs and processes to be clearer and less biased in their favour; if they knew that there was a greater chance of losing money because their process or signage was unclear, you can be sure they’d soon update them.
Secondly, the appeal process should be made easier and more straightforward; 60% of drivers that received a PCN didn’t challenge it, with 13% being put off by the confusion of information, and 17% claiming that they didn’t even know how to appeal. Over 50% of these drivers stated that if the process was clearer, they’d have challenged the unfair fine. You can see the official government advice on challenging a fine here: https://www.gov.uk/parking-tickets/challenging-a-ticket
I got fine £40 for driving for 2 seconds in a bus lane. Obviously there was not sign at this point as the bus lane ended just as I moved over into it. Can I appeal after I have paid and get a refund?
No. Paying a fine is an admission of guilt/wrongdoing.
Yes I paid a fine at the prompt payment rate, thinking I could appeal, then found out I couldn’t. The paperwork is confusing and misleading on the grounds for the fine. It offers half the full fine if you pay promptly, but if you appealed successfully, you should be able to get a refund. It should at least be a recognition that the authority has the right to impose a fine even if you don’t agree it was appropriate to the circumstances.
Mal Bus lanes are marked bus lane on the suirface also – what traffic where you undertaking for those two seconds? Besides this once a fine is paid for some sad reason they will claim that you have admitted fault even though you did not.
They may have been turning which involved crossing part of the Bus lane.
There was a similar situation reported recently where-by a significant number of motorists where fined for crossing a bus lane which I believe had been incorrectly marked.
By paying the fine you admit to being at fault if you think it’s wrong don’t pay it and appeal therefore not admitting guilt
A bus lane may be marked at the start but not by its end. Unless you know the situation it’s unfair to criticise. Perhap you’re stuck behind a queue waiting to turn but the light for straight ahead is green but moving into that lane means traversing the bus lane. In fact that was exactly what happened to me one January after a heavy snowfall. Roads not cleared and everyone following single tyre tracks only through the white stuff. Apparently in moving lanes to continue straight ahead which normally you’re perfectly entitled to do, I traversed some bus lane. Not really surprising as it was completely obscured by the white stuff!! Duh. The council ignored that! Really I should have contested it but this was before smart phones etc to take pictures to prove the situation. Now I know far better and challenge everything as I’m not a scofflaw, it’s usually unclear signs, markings and interpretation of all the gobbledygook regulations.
I did win an appeal elsewhere for parking by mistake where I thought it was the continuation of Free spaces but hadn’t noticed as the signs were impossible to read in the DARK! A pay parking machine ate my £1 and wouldn’t give me the ticket.
I appealed. They lied and said the machine didn’t have any extra £ 1 in its daily tally. Unbelievable. Not possible. It’s a pound but it’s the principle. I drove off and found a free space elsewhere. I refuse to pay in that town ever again. Their loss.
Road markings are traffic signs too. If your vehicle crossed the continuous white line that marks the edge of a bus lane, it entered an area road space that your vehicle is prohibited from using. Next time, don’t be so impatient and save your money.
How many times have you seen white lines worn out? Thereby making them obscure.
If the the lin lines are worn or faded you have grounds to challenge your PCN because the sign was not lawful.
If road markings are traffic signs too, what is the situation if you are driving on a strange road and the vehicle in front moves on to reveal an arrow on the road that says you are in the right turn lane, the left turn lane or the straight on lane , a manoeuvre which is contrary to your intention? There are no other advance warnings and such markings can vary at successive junctions with an otherwise identical layout.
It is a pleasure to drive in Belgian towns where clear roadside signs show the junction layout well in advance and nobody needs to change lanes at the last minute (and they never do, in my experience.)
Any driver worth their salt would comply with the lane markings they had unintentionally found themselves in and then find a safe place to turn around and return to their intended direction of travel.
Glad to hear someone else finds it ridiculous that there are arrows marked on the road for left or right turn only and you can only see them once it’s too late, I never understood why they think that works. Also as bad as the 2 lanes that go straight ahead and only one lane at the other side of the lights, it’s just asking for arguments
No! If you pay it you’ve admitted guilt!
Hate having to wait to turn left in a queue, when there is no Buses insight. Then you go to turn and the Bus hits you. One legal thing that needs to be changed, atone to the Americans and the red light rule. Turning signs say you can pass the red if clear. Got hit by a Bus in a lorry, insisted the driver wait for the Police as per the law. An accident involving a PSV requires Police attendance.
Went down well with the passengers, Police said the Bus Driver was at fault as I had already started to make the turn. Blocked the road for miles. They changed the lane to allow better turning.
“Incestified fines”, a scam to you and me, mean that the issuer has an incentive for the client to park illegally. More illegality, the more revenue the issuer will generate. Makes pure business sense really. Always stop a traffic warden and ask to see their hourly “Hazard assessment form” for every street they have walked, prior to your conversation and perceived future route. All publicised roadworks and expected busy times due to events and similar hazards which could affect the wardens ability to do their job, or be detrimental to their health must be logged prior to them beginning their shift. Failure to provide these means they are just a member of the public in a uniform with no authority ……… and also ask for their “vehicle check certificate” for their shift on that day, including tyre pressures, and relevant engine and washer bottle level checks. Let’s face it….we all must stick to the law. Park safely and respect the rules of the road.
I think you mean incentivised?
Where do two wrongs make a right? But you are correct in that they should also be penalised but so should the person parking illegally one should not cancel out the other.
Aylesbury is atrocious for misleading signage. Case in point, in Exchange Street, just off the High Street: two adjacent stretches for parking, both wither meter parking till 6.00 pm. One of these has a very small sign under the main sign, saying loading only from 6.00 pm to 8,00 am. I’m there every week for an evening rehearsal, and it is regularly patrolled. I’ve never seen any loading taking place there, and like so many others in Aylesbury, it’s clearly designed to mislead and ensnare. If the council really wanted to keep it clear for loading, they’d put up clear signs. If fines were paid centrally to a national fund, this would remove the temptation to local councils to con the motorist.
Revd G.P. Howell. So you stood there for 14 hours a day 7 days a week. These signs normally mean that goods vehicles can use to unload and load.
MOST LOADIN G TO STORES ETC. TAKE PLACE IN THE EARLY HOURS-HENCE YOU WILL RARELY SEE IT HAPPEN
Local Councils do not con but can rule bound and not always efficient or resourced and are sometimes prone to improper political pressure. Contact the design team at the council and report it they will happily amend if appropriate or give you a reason why they are unable to.
I challenged a PCN issued by Mid-Devon Council and won. I bought a ticket at a machine in Okehampton which required the input of my car registration to the machine. Somewhere between the ticket machine and the car I lost the ticket! Searched everywhere for it but could not find it. I had all the previous day’s tickets in my car but no more change to buy another ticket (and why should I anyway!). I leave all the previous tickets (to prove I was an honest person) and a note for the parking warden – but he still issued me a ticket! Next morning when I parked up, I actually found the previous day’s ticket in the gutter next to where I had parked he day before!! It had obviously gone under the car which was why I could not see it. I enclosed a photo of my dashboard from the day before, the note I had left for the Warden, and the “lost” ticket. I also asked for an explanation as to why the Warden had not checked the ticket machine as surely it kept a record of the car registrations entered? No reply to my request for an explanation bub the Parking Fine was cancelled a little over a week later!
I think most car parks are pay and display. You paid but failed to display. It is not the offcers fault you lost/misplaced the ticket, so you got the ticket. Officers don’t have the capability to check the machines this is normally done by the council or contactors, and as shown you had paid your ticket was cancelled.
It clearly states that you should display the ticket – if you do not then they will isssue you a PCN the warden does not have access to the machine. However the enforcement head office can access it so when you appealed they checked it and found you were one of those telling the truth and rescinded your fine.
On a recent weekday evening at 20.00 hrs, I entered one of my local surface car parks, paid my parking fee and proceeded to a row of at least eight empty spaces, where I perhaps did not take the care I should have done to manoeuvre exactly within the marked lines of a space. As a regular user of this car park in the evenings, I knew that it would be lightly frequented, and my parking would be very unlikely to cause any inconvenience to other users.
Upon returning to my vehicle at 23.00 hrs, (my car was one of no more than a half-dozen remaining in the entire car park), I was dismayed to discover that a PCN had been applied to my windscreen; I wondered if I had perhaps forgotten to pay my parking fee? But no, I had apparently infringed a parking regulation that I was unaware of, namely, failing to park exactly between the marked lines of a space.
While I realise that inconsiderate parking is totally unacceptable (for example, those drivers who leave a half car’s length behind their vehicles at the end of a line of street parking spaces are quite infuriating) I had no idea that my perceived offence would generate a PCN at this time of very light occupation of the car park.
I trust that my explanation and statement of mitigating circumstances might result in the above-referenced PCN being rescinded.
This is the content of a letter sent to my local council recently; what would you expect of the result?
You’ve guessed it, no cancellation of the PCN!
Yes, it’s all about REVENUE!
I’m sorry but I have no sympathy for those who cannot take the time and trouble to park correctly, and trying the excuse that the car park was not very busy is immaterial, one person goes over a line and that next space is lost…
I would agree Dave but there are also those parking spaces where they are too small for the vehicle – not the case here but there are instances when it is neccessary to park at a slight angle and go over a line.
I like these pedantic replies of criticism. What about the Chelsie Tractors that abound on the roads. I don’t see the parking spaces being widened for those vehicles. Are the parking wardens supposed to ignore those? No, I didn’t think so. Thus enhances the council’s chances of increasing their coffers even more. And before you say it, no, I don’t own one.
You clearly were at fault, follow the rules – don’t try to change them.
So its fine to park in two spaces when you feel it is not busy, your parking would cause great inconvenience to the next car looking for a space as now there is not just one space short but 2 spaces short as you have used them both.
Ian Wilson the next time you go to pay in a car park look around or next to the machines there are in some cases 15 – 20 reasons why you can get a ticket. Councils have no way of knowing how busy a car park is going to get, so the penalty’s either cover a set opening and closing time or 24 hours.
They do not paint and mark out bays just to make the car park look pretty it’s for inconsiderate people like your self to leave space for others to park I have had to leave car parks because of people like you if you Cannot park your car properly don’t drive it
Learn to park properly and you won’t have a problem…Simples
FYI it’s a NOTICE (Unenforceable) you lot are just sheep for paying this much to corrupt councils… If I ever get one of the notices the first place it goes is into a council bin WHERE IT BELONGS
Totally WRONG. If you get a PENALTY Charge Notice issued by a Council, it is enforceable. A PARKING Charge Notice issued by vultures like Parking Eye and ABP, are invoices, and can be a grey area when deciding whether to pay or ignore.
Private parking invoices are enforceable, courts are full of cases and it’s getting worse. If you ignore will end up with a CCJ……
Private Parking Notices are not enforceable even in a court of law. These ‘fines’ come under the laws of Banking where the banks charged excessively for over draughts. they can only charge for the revenue lost by the bank for the over draught. It was ruled that they cannot charge more than the lost revenue for that space not being available, i. e. if a parking space is charged £3.00/hour they cannot charge more then the accumulation of the overparking time. So 3 hours overparking will be £9’00 It’s the law and the law can only be changed by Parliament
Been listening to some bar room barriers have you
Good luck with that if you end up in court. The penalty should reasonable for your breach of contract and the signage should be clear.. £80 is probably reasonable. £200 is probably not and the judge will rule on clarity. Costs could also be awarded and you will end up with a large bill. More cases are going to court so unless you have a good reason for breaching the implied contract you should pay up.
Or register your car to a dodgy name
no you will not end up with a CCJ. you have to lose in court first, and very few get that far as long as you defend any claim that they send you. never lost a case yet and ive done 100’s
So many Bailiffs and junked or auctioned cars disprove that. May we all pray that you get your just deserves when you do – happy bin raking
You will still have to pay please try it if you think you have got the confidence many have tried
Sick and tired listening to adults cry baby like little girls.
But I only broke the law for a few minutes! But I only parked like an inconsiderate moron for a few seconds, honest! But I didn’t see the sign, I’m being victimized!
These are the type of morons that park next to the only car in the car park, then bang their door in to the parked car when getting out. Just yesterday, I parked my car at the side of the empty road, up comes a mong, and parks bumper to bumper; a little later she had to reverse to drive around me! Every day I see these types of people park on the zigzags in front of a local school and double yellows opposite; go ahead, say something and your the one that’s in the wrong as they absolve them selves from all wrong doing. After all it’s not their fault they didn’t choose to park 20 meters down the road where there are lots of legit free parking places, eh?
The answer is to grow a brain and don’t brake the rules, they are there to keep people safe.
Yes, I agree entirely Marti.
I have a 2 door car which has wider,longer doors than a 4 door car and when i go to the supermarkets, i try and find an end space or at least a space where there is more than 1 free space next to mine. This is to help avoid my car being dented by another irresponsible , ignorant driver just opening their door without any courtesy to the vehicle in the neighbouring space. So many times I have returned to my vehicle to find someone parked right next to me when the are loads of other vacant spaces in the car park.. WHY ?????
It is an expensive repair and funnily enough, no driver ever puts a note on your car, explaining that they have accidently dented your vehicle and when you ask the supermarket for their CCTV footage they are never able to confirm the registration number as “it’s not clear enough ”
To all those idiotic, inconsiderate drivers who do this….GET THE BUS NEXT TIME
Ess5, buy yourself an ex-army Land Rover.
I have two cars, the battered old Land Rover (which is actually narrower than a normal car) and have inherited my dad’s shiny executive saloon. Strangely, people avoid parking next to the Land Rover, and it never gets any fresh dings, no matter how full is the car park. Whereas the shiny saloon appears to by a magnet for inconsiderate people who think it’s ok not to control their shopping trolley.
Inconsiderate parking, and inconsiderate use of the space (i.e. please control your trolley), drive me crazy.
I have the need for wide access because of my recently replaced hip. I park as close to the left hand line in the space as possible and this makes getting out of the car easier without dinging the door on my right. I have a blue badge, but rarely use it now I can walk without a stick, albeit slowly.
Some people make mistakes when they are anxious or rushing to the toilet. Signs can be misleading or ambiguous. From one side the car may be well within the space, but not on the other. Only noticeable on return later.. People who never make mistakes often make nothing much either.
Just make it harder for the other guy selfish git he has to get out and in too
Well if you have the problem with other cars and the drivers then start using a TAXI, they can take you right to the place you want go so it even SAVES YOU WALKING too far.
You are supposed to be a qualified driver and look for signs when entering car parks don’t cry when it all goes the wrong way for you
I believe Authorities that breach their duty to sign roads and restrictions clearly should be fined. It does appear that Local Governments seem to believe they are above the law. The same should apply to relevant bodies on National and Motorway speed limits when poor maintenance and upkeep see repeat offending of incorrect limits. A particular example being between the A30 and the M3 M25 interchange when 30 mph for just one junction is often displayed at 2 and 3 in the morning. People obey speed limits if they make sense. Incompetent authorities in breach of their duties do not contribute to compliance or safety.
What that comes down to is;- Rules are made for the obedience of fools and the guidance of wise men. But councils only see the £££££ signs.
Coventry city council rip off motorist with poor signage on an unnecessary restriction. These stats represent £30 fines per ‘offence’ (source CCC FOI request)
All for 20 yds. Violation restricted street Warwick Road Coventry.
Not all these people are reckless drivers deliberately ignoring signs. CCC are not interested in improving signage it would hurt their income!
Why doesn’t the AA,RAC and other associated organisations represent their members and combine to form a bloc to oppose these PCN and many other iniquitous measures endured by the U.K. motorist
I bought a ticket and placed in my now defunct tax disc holder so that it wouldn’t flip over or slip from the dashboard when closing the door. I returned to the car to see a CEO hovering and just about to issue me with a PCN.. I pointed out to him that I had a ticket prominently displayed at which point he told that he hadn’t seen and as such was about to penalise me. I remarked to him that basically his incompetence almost got me a ticket……and he just agreed.
Personally I am sick of people parking on double yellow lines and making entrances to side streets dangerous so PLEASE keep on fining them.
If you are breaking the law pay the fine. I have appealed once, on the advice of the traffic warden and been successful. There was an error.
Just be a reasonable citizen
Use Auntie’s blue badge and you can park on double yellow lines, blind corners or wherever you like. Nobody ever checks whether the person the badge was issued to, was in the vehicle, or issues a penalty notice to a blue badge for a dangerously parked vehicle. Either a place is dangerous for parking, in which case nobody should park there, or it is not!
The Blue badge rules and who can have one, need drastic overhaul.
Under royal mail act any legal paper has sent by recorded delivery, Lt up council to prove it been sent and received., They don’t I happen me then stress and taking car crush it, they pay me more than fine new car pus stress losse monies or wage.
What on Earth on you on about?
Wrong about Mail they take no culpability and the only way to complain is if you are the sender so it is wrong but if sent it is still deemed as received – however I have compiled quite a lot of evidence of wrong delivery
Try harder to learn English
Try smoke signs John and you’ll be easier to understand
Come to live and work in Leigh, in my area motorists are parking on newly painted lines no parking/loading /unloading and mostly blocking walkways.
But the enforcement of restrictions is very , very selective in some cities. If you go to certain areas of Leicester where there is extensive parking on double yellow lines you will never see a warden. But go to the city centre and transgress you will be spotted immediately. Why is this ?
I would like to know as the parking on teh double yellows make transit very difficult as tre road becomes one way. Surely nothing to do with votes in the Council?
It depends on where the wardens are. They tend to prefer city centres as there are a lot more violators in any one street. There are usually a limited number of them, so they can’t be everywhere. It’s also a bit more important to keep city centres unclogged with cars!
simple solution, don’t use a Transit.
Mostly fair. I’m sick to death of drivers parking on pavements and double yellow lines locally. They are a menace, and I only wish more got caught and fined. Everyone on the road should know you can’t park on yellow lines, so there is absolutely no excuse. Also no excuse for the appalling abuse some wardens get for ticketing either. It’s their job! They don’t make the rules!
I am sympathetic to people who drive in bus lanes, here they are badly marked. But, in my experience, they are all pretty clear, and it’s mostly the lazy and arrogant who do it.
And yes, I have been fined for parking. Both times it was my own fault for not displaying a ticket or overstaying.
I found a man parked in my driveway when I asked him what he was doing he said My wife’s just popped across the road to the chemist I was speechless and I certainly could not fine him as a private householder I actually did not have a leg to stand on Some people believe they can do whatever they want and mostly get away with it
You should have blocked him in and gone for an afternoon nap… See how he would like that
You can’t block them in, you will be breaking the law believe it or not, there was another story about this a few days ago, where someone had a car left on their drive for 2 months and they were told by the police it was a civil matter and if they dragged it out and it was damaged they would be liable!
any cnut parks a car on my drive, apart from me, will get a can of petrol and a match thrown at it IRRESPECTIVE of the consequences
Actually you can you can prosecute for trewsspassing and suspected criminal damage if anything is cracked broken etc by them tresspassing. If they leave the vehicle and stay away yu can have it treated as abandoned. You can force the Police’s hand by refusing them access back onto the property also and request Police assistance and do not let them leave until the Police arrive and take details so you can take a private prosection. All of this is aggravation and the Police do not like it either. But until they have a law that can be enforced and the resource to do this then perhaps they might like to complain to the Commissioners and the Members of Parliament to give them the tools to do something about this.
Let all his tyres down, not criminal or civil damage, but a tad inconvenient for him.
I saw a police car parked on a causey only this morning. These Guardians of the Law have little respect for it when it comes to walking a few yards.
Yes I have won a PCN Where the council had deliberately put the signs high and sent in wrong manipulating tactics to confuse innocent motorists. I think when there is a hearing some from the council should attend and a petition should be made on line on this subject if a council does not attend the hearing the case should be thrown out and award to be made to the innocent party.
Its a lottery for the council since there are a lot of cut back they try to catch innocent motorists to generate money to make up for the cut back I am sure you will all agree on this point and support me
You were in the wrong – Start by driving with due care and attention before bleating about innocent motorists. I ahve managed to drive for 40 years all over the UK Europe and the USA and have a clean license . I manage to park legally everywhere I have gone and where I can’t I move on to a place that I can, I got a ticket once in 1995 in Croydon as I overstayed in a bay 15 minutes. This was due to the Registrar being 2 hours late and my wedding being delayed. And there was no way I was leaving my wife on the alter for the sake of meter feeding. So I paid the fine and b***hed about registrarrs ever since – but not the ticket warden who was right.
In the last 11 years it must be the only growth Industry we have heard about? For the last 3 years it’s been
Brexit,not much to cheer about there.Still Boris has got 98 days to come up with a plan,let’s sell Northern
Ireland to the EU.Then they can come up with a plan,Mr Davis never had one and he had 2.5 years twiddling
his thumbs,should he not return his ministerial wage packet as unearned income.Still why pick on him,how
many top earns,earn what they get.Most ordinary people would go to prison for claiming a Duck house on
The article about PCNs and revenue generation for Councils is misleading. Any money generated by fines legally has to be put back into improving transport – resurfacing roads, buses, local trams etc. It cannot be used for general budget items, so it isn’t really a cash cow for councils. It benefits every who drives or uses public transport.
That said, my own council, Manchester has been taken to task for confusing signs at “bus gates” where cars aren’t allowed. Lots of fines revoked, but as Coventry, Manchester thinks it’s signs comply with the law. Agree that signs need to be clear but I don’t accept that drivers who park illegally or think it’s OK to drive in bus lanes, should whinge when they get a ticket.
Compare that with the parasites like Parking Eye who rake in millions from hospital staff, patients and visitors for transgressing some obscured parking instruction hidden from view. These people are obscene as are the English NHS hospitals who employ them.
Agree with everything except where it legally goes – sadly in many areas it is used to fund things like Freedom pass and Blue badge administration and other transport related council administration costs and does not actually improve anything. If you think this is harsh do a Freedom of Information request for the accounts and look at the response you get.
And yes legally the money has to go to improving transport but sadly this does not run to having enough enforcement officers to properly enforce all the areas required nor does it run to a tow truck to remove vehicles blocking the highway. Really start to quesation the ppublic accounts for your area and you will have an eye opener and a circuler blame game.
But Martin, since the cash from PCNs must go to improving transport, it means that the council doesn’t have to spend from their govt. budget, so fines are still just an income source, and an extra tax on the motorist.
Having personally witnessed one car get over 30 tickets in two months I would say that the process is severely flawed
Thornton Heath (Croydon.).. Accidentally Park with a wheel on the pavement in a back street and get a £50 per wheel fine. NO ACTION ever taken against cars constantly parked on the zigzags outside Beulah school 24/7, or the cars that Park by Grangewood Park with wheels outside the marked bays leaving no space for. buggies & mobility scooters to use the pavements. But that’s par for the course with Croydon
Since the move from Police to Council enforcement and the decriminalisation of some offences and them being moved to a civil area, Enforcement has effectively stopped and civil fining has surged. I suspect that as your report is from Council fines that this is not just London but Nationwide.
The majority of tickets are issued because a law has been broken. Many councils have issues with signage through wear and tear vandelism or just honest mistakes there are a few from incompetence and the rare ones from devient behaviour by the council department responsible. (this is small) Recent DoT reviews into signage have neglected to change or update signage as they feel it is in the highway code and therefore does not require repetition of a sign.
For some time we have recorded one dropped kerb and the empty space adjacent to it which has a single yellow line on it but no dropped kerb- so far 798 drivers have parked by a dropped kerb. not one of them were aware of rule 243 of the Highway Code. This included – Police cars and Immigration vans (who were polite and moved) – Utility vehicles from Openreach and KN network who refused to move at all and were abusive – SGN who actually also parked in the front garden and tresspassed and was also abusive and lied about where he was failing to note he was on camera – multiple delivery drivers for Amazon Hermes – DPD and UPS with only UPS actually apologising and moving – Mini cabs which have also parked on the drive and blocked the access and been abusive to the many private drivers who also were rude abusive and sometimes violant. All of these were reported to the Council the Police and the respective companies – One ticket has been issued by the Council, no action has been taken by the Police for the abuse the assaults or the criminal damage or the anti social behaviours – both enforcement authorities cite lack of resources. All the Companies are still parking illegally and causing havoc and blocking the road no change so far.
The problem is that drivers feel that they can park where they want and drive how they wish and pay a fine if and when they get caught or argue despite knowing they are wrong.
Just down from our study one car received 30 tickets (itshould have had 60) as very single day he parked blocking access on yellow lines and a dropped kerb and a parking bay without a ticket.
There is a strong case for car drivers to not just be fined anymore but to receive penalty points and bans with confiscation of vehicles. People make mistakes and these are recognisable however mutiple repeat offenders of blocking access – tresspassing – misusing a bus lane or box junction, and illegally turning left/right along with parking on a kerb on zig zags outside schools are doing this on purpose. When they are filmed being verbally aabusive and intentionally park illegally or driving illegally it should not be a fine but a removal of their vehicle, License or both. Perhaps the Government would like to transfer all this to an enforcement service that actually has resource to enforce.
My daughter was issued with a PNC when she inadvertently entered a bus lane. Signage was unclear and when she suddenly realized, she was boxed in by a lorry and a bus so had to continue. Pure and simple entrapment by so called cash strapped councils. Like to know what exactly they are wasting all our money on. Probably fancy wages and jobs that could be scrapped. They seem to outsource more and more jobs but never seem to cut any staff.
My local Council have just initiated overnight parking charges employing traffic wardens overnight at goodness knows what rate. So complicated a system nobody knows what to do, all this while place goes to the wall with filth everywhere, public toilets being closed and row after row of boarded up shops. Their solution – let’s build on the green belt to encourage more empty holiday homes. Utter disgrace – public should be able to institute a vote of no confidence and sack the lot of them.
The Council seem quite happy to allow such situations to continue, since it generates income for them. Maintenance of roads and proper markings has low priority.
I just got a ticket for parking on a road with no yellow lines and restrictions on the road but a sign on the pavement for and adjacent carpark restrictions saying you could not park on the road. More confusing signage designed to p.. people off and rake in the money.
I had been traveling to Doncaster for years and followed the same route for years then I didn’t go for a few years I traveled the same route as always did before then got two bus lane fines for the same day one entering Doncaster and one leaving Doncaster, the markings where unclear but I payed the fine anyway £45 each time 90 in all, parking fines are big business, drivers are nothing but cash cows these days
Having being fined £60 a few years back for doing 34 in a 30 zone at 0145 am when no other vehicle person sight I was furious as the actual 30mph sign was obscured when I checked. I paid the fine but I should have challenged it. However my wife persuaded me no to !!!.
Built up areas do not have to display 30 mph only when you enter from a higher speed area, clue is the lampposts spaced close together, also Chief officer rules 10%+1 so at 34 you should not have got a fine, heard of all these just 1 mph over the limit but never seen one
Wife parked in a car park last Saturday, paid for her ticket and displayed it on the far side of the windscreen. She came back 1.5 hours later to find she had been given a ticket. The Parking Attendant was still walking around and when she asked why she had got the ticket he said he noticed an older ticket still on her windscreen and didn’t check for a more up to current ticket. He admitted he was wrong but could not cancel the ticket and she would have to appeal. Shame she didn’t record the conversation as this would have been proof of the Parking Attendants mistake.
If you had the ticket, and the fine, you send it to the parking authority with a polite letter of explanation, your chances of getting a fine cancellation aren’t bad. I once pointed out that because the fee ticket was flimsy it had blown on to the floor of the car and received a sticky holder for next time.
Colchester Borough Councilhave recently erected “No Parking” signs at very infrequent intervals around Eastwood Drive, within days, a resident was ticketed outside their home, not a sign visible in either direction. I hope that they appeal.
That’s roughly £10 per car on the roads. Given that some car users will live in areas where there are as yet no parking restrictions, that suggests that, as ever, urban motorist are hardest hit. The easy answer of course is don’t overstay your welcome or park in the wrong places, but even the most careful can lapse. It’s a thought though that if motorists made concerted efforts to not infringe the rules the costs of collection of fines would soon outstrip the now easy profits. Given that private companies are widely used as fine enforcers they would soon lose their apetite for loss making easy bucks enterprises. The same applies to speeding and bus lanes infringements. If in doubt don’t push your luck.
I complained to Reading council about misleading signage on parking and just got a swift rebuttal so had to pay. Since then signage has changed.
Several years ago I took a rare trip into the city centre. Having a blue badge, I checked the council’s website to see where the disabled parking spaces were and how to access them. I followed the directions but found the lane marked “Buses and Authorised Vehicles Only”. Considering myself to be authorised, I drove along and parked in a disabled bay, only to receive a PCN in the post for travelling in that lane. It turned out the one-way system had changed but the council website had not been updated. I appealed and the penalty was cancelled, but I have never graced the city centre with my custom since. When I checked the council website recently, the information had STILL not been updated. How many more people have been penalised over the years and not fought it? Nice little earner, eh?
This is quite common. Only thing Councils ensure is their cameras and traffic wardens are up to date with changes.. Then they wonder why people stay away from town centres.
In the interest of fairness and equality ( today’s watchword) a PCN of say £30 if paid quickly or £60 if delayed, when successfully challenged, the appellant should be paid £30 to compensate him (or her) for inconveniene and expense of being wrongly fined. Then see a dramatic drop in unfair enforcement notices.
On this issue I disagree with your article. Too many drivers don’t take care to look at the signs and be aware of what they mean..
Also some drivers just arrogantly ignore the restrictions, often because they think they have a right to park wherever they like.
Over the last 20 years I have noticed a significant increase in the belligerent attitude of parking enforcers. I have successfully appealed against PCN’s, and even found that rare and elusive reasonable enforcement person. The lessons I have learned is that check the signs and appeal if they are not right e.g. Misleading obscured or as in a lot of cases worn out, and accept that I will make mistakes from time to time.
Once being a traffic warden (retired) we were told not to issue PCN notices for Christmas weekend so people could do their shopping we found that cars were parked out of bay , over staying for hours ,obstructing giving no one else any chance to get a parking space it was a utter desaster be cause no one would move for anyone else and I believe this is how it would be with out any restrictions, by the way I don’t agree with them all the time
Birmingham City Council wrongly issued me a pcn. The issue was parking in a bus waiting area outside of the hours when that location was reserved for busses. After having my initial challenge declined, I wrote back saying that I would see them at the tribunal and restating my reasons for the challenge. They wrote back again, this time accepting my position, scrapping the pcn and giving the excuse that the issuing agent was still undergoing training, when clearly the first decline was a simple form letter urging you to pay pay pay…
I asked them for compensation for the time and effort that went into building my challenge, photographs, letter writing at professional rates etc, and offered them half price if they settled my claim within two weeks. Declined, but I think we should all do this as a matter of course to let them know that spurious pcn’s are simply not acceptable.
North Essex Parking Partnership CEOs don’t even deal with illegally parked cars on the roads, they just walk on by much preferring a captive ‘audience’ by standing around in public car parks waiting for tickets to expire. Of course, when you challenge them they deny that’s what they are doing but its like Quick Draw McGraw when a ticket runs out of time on a car and they just ‘happen’ to be right by that vehicle.
On the subject of unfair PCN issues,I received a fine for £50 for overstaying the permitted time a couple of weeks ago.Although the first hours parking is free,and I was attending a doctors appointment which took considerably longer than 1 hour,when the normal doctors appointment usualy takes a lot less time than that.I appealed to the PCN issuers and they got back to me saying that I should have forseen the delay at the doctors’ and that they wouldn’t uphold my appeal.Nothing but money grabbing B******S.It’s true that the motorist is regarded as a cash cow.
The situation with motorbikes in bus lanes is ridiculous. The evidence now says its safe and works but we now have some bus lanes that allow motorbikes and some that don’t meaning confusion and riders constantly having to check signage instead of concentrating on the road. There is even a bus lane in Hammersmith that has reversed the allowing of motorbikes in it leading to numerous PCNs being issued. The end of this lane is covered by a CCTV operator who sits there all day earning F&H council money and in guessing they reversed it as their revenue had suffered so much. Something should be done to force all councils to change their bus lanes to include motorbikes.
Criminals don’t pay fines only law abiding people. Think about that for a moment.
Tories are responsible for enabling Councils to willfully milk motorists for anything they can get away with, when they changed the rules shortly after they came into power in 2010.
It should be considered a scandal, as Councils all over the country are impoverishing householders with increased Council taxes, reduced services, higher fees, newly chargeable services, as well as the raid on motorists. Tories enabled them to do this with legislation, and then they reduced central funding for councils, despite hiking business rates for small businesses (which is another major reason for the demise of high streets!).
I think that many councils are reaping unjust rewards from motorists. I have contested two PCNs in the past year that were the result of bad signage, and have won each time. As long as we feel the PCN has been unfairly issued we absolutely must contest them. I’m amazed that there are “17% claiming that they didn’t even know how to appeal” as on all of my tickets there has been a website given for appeals.
Had a parking fine outside Lancaster police station when I reported a theft
Appealed and won because no markings on road just a small sign 20 feet high on a building and not local to the area
Certainly signage must improve. Perhaps a few ‘wealthy’ individuals who have received a PCN might want to think about suing a council over the poor signage/issuing of unfair PCN’s. By the way, having stated it for years……NAME the individuals responsible for the departments who issue these ‘fines’ rather than just ‘Westminster Council’…… let’s have a ‘name and shame crusade up and down the country. Don’t forget, councillors are elected and should be ‘serving’ their public!
Cash strapped Councils see the motorist as an easy target to bolster their funds. However, the revenue raised does not always go on improving roads or markings thereof. My local authority refuse to disclose where revenue raised from PCN’s goes.
Currently we have signage obliterated by trees, overgrown grass verges and potholes (which have to be 30mm deep) before repair is considered. The joys of careful happy motoring !!!
Parked my small Smart car INSIDE double yellow lines with plenty of side space – and got a ticket! In other words, to the left of the lines, on ungrassed area, and off any pavements. As a conscienteous IAM driver of (too!) many years, I never knew that this was an offence. Have photos thereof… unbelievable! I was off the road, but local authorities have gone completely off the rails.
Central Government starves local govt of cash —> local govt raises funding via fines, excessive parking charges and high shop rates —> shoppers stay away and buy from tax-dodging corporations instead —> town centre businesses go bust —> central govt taxes (VAT, income tax) go down —> central govt further starves local govt of cash…… etc. etc. Lather, rinse repeat.
Breathtaking stupidity by all involved, but at least private parking enforces are making millions, eh?
I did once suffer a parking charge in Newark many years ago when it wasn’t quite the scourge it is today. Having parked near the toilet block (in Need) got my ticket on the way out. on return to the car the attendant was walking away having placed a ticket on the screen. He refused to acknowledge I even existed and refused to discuss the matter only to remind me it’s “PAY and Display”. The parking notice issued was actually 3 minutes after the ticket I had just paid for. Newark authorities did reluctantly cancel the charge “on this one occasion” then proceeded in the letter to remind me of the responsibility of paying to park.
I got a ticket for failing to display my blue badge by accident.
The Council Offices were next to the car park and I took in my blue badge, which they photocopied as proof that I had one.
I appealed and my appeal was rejected. The ‘Regulations’ stated that they should be displayed. So they prosecute disabled drivers, even when they have blue badges!