Monday, December 13, 2010

BBC Politics Show ...

The BBC Politics Show discloses the advice from leading traffic law expert Stephen Sauvain QC which highlighted the failings of Scarborough and other North Yorkshire CPZs. This 'advice' also indicates that monies taken from motorists in areas where the signage is non-compliant must be refunded.

To date, the Department for Transport refused to make this advice available to the High Court in the case of Herron v The Parking Adjudicator but now that this information has been made public and the decision in the Moss case explicitly reaffirms the requirement for signs to strictly comply with the law then hopefully this will put an end to the nonsense spouted by some councils and adjudicators the a sign is okay if 'no reasonable person could be misled.'

Our sources say that a great deal of panic has ensued in many town halls from officers fearing that their continued enforcement of known non-compliant signage may well result in a visit and an investigation. The first court case for misconduct in public office is listed in Exeter for February. May I be so bold as to suggest that this will not be the last?


Keith Peat said...

How come you are not supporting
or promoting Driver's Protest Weekend Neil? It's dead simple and give power against all driver injustice.

Already announced in Sunday Express, Daily Star, BBC Radio?

This could help your work too. See it at contact me via

Alan Stanton said...

Thanks for this post, Neil. I especially enjoyed the video clip. Even the dubious wisdom of Patrick Troy from the British Parking Association.

Patrick Troy: “We’re asking the Government to look at the Penalty Charge level ... Penalty Charges are designed to ensure that motorists comply with parking controls.”

But is there hard evidence that motorists are not complying? What I read and hear is that many local councils think they're complying only too well! So income from fines is not high enough.

It was refreshing to listen to the discussion between Green Party councillor Andrew Cooper and Lord Lucas.

Andrew Cooper: “We’ve got 28% cuts in local authority funding. Money has got to come from somewhere.”

Interviewer: Motorists are an easy hit, though, aren’t they?

AC: Would that it was not necessary to do so. I would certainly prefer it if we weren’t doing this at this particular time. We’ve obviously got to find alternatives for people who are using cars.

But this isn’t about that. This is about public sector cuts. This is about immense losses in services and jobs for local people. And we’re using this – local authorities are having to use this as a way of raising money. It’s not about transport. It’s not about hammering cars. It’s just a way of finding money."

Lord Lucas: “But if you start trying to raise revenue through enforcement that’s rather like incentivising police to arrest more people. Or the taxman to investigate more people. You get a corruption of the relationship between local authorities and the motorist – local authorities and their citizens – that makes everyone’s life less happy."

Andrew Cooper: “Well this issue simply wouldn’t arise if the Government would properly fund local authorities in the first place. We’re losing millions of pounds. People are going to suffer”


Though this begs one huge issue.

How far is it legal for local councils to set charges - for fines or Controlled Parking Zones - as a deliberate and planned measure to generate a bigger surplus on their Parking Accounts?

In other words, it's not to pay for any increasing costs of parking and parking enforcement. Nor to refresh or correct their lines and signs. Nor because they see a steep fall in parking income which threatens a deficit. It's not even on environmental grounds.

As Andrew Cooper says, it's simply because of Government cuts. Is such a blatant and obvious 'stealth' tax breaking the law?

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