Five percent of residents in major UK city could be hit with parking fines this Christmas

Five percent of residents in major UK city could be hit with parking fines this Christmas

12/14/2020

Martin Lewis explains council and private company parking fines

Over 300,000 parking fines were issued to those in the capital last December meaning drivers were three times more likely to get a fine than the national average. A fine in London will cost a massive £94.50 on average making the city the most expensive in the country for the penalty.

Parking charges in London are 54 times higher than in Belfast which was considered the area where drivers were least likely to be fined.

Just 317 parking tickets were administered in the Northern Ireland capital last December with just 0.09 percent of their population picking up a charge.

This was a massive 18 times lower than the UK average but the £90 fine made the city the second most expensive.

The new analysis from car finance experts Finder found almost 400,000 parking fines were issued across some of the biggest UK cities in 2019.

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This equated to a total of £33.5million in parking charges with the average ticket valued at £54.

Liz Edwards, editor-in-chief at Finder, said drivers should research “back-up parking options” if they can’t stop in their favourite place.

Motorists could also shop in “less busy areas” which will reduce shopping times and prevent drivers from being delayed and picking up a ticket.

Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, she said: “Despite the pandemic, people still plan to shop in-store over Christmas – two-thirds of Brits expect to do this, according to our research.

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“Not only are shops extremely busy because of the time of year but social distancing measures have meant that people are having to queue to get into stores as well, meaning they could be out for longer periods of time.

“To avoid parking illegally, it’s worth researching back-up parking options in case a prime spot isn’t available.

“For example, you could try a supermarket car park (you might need to buy some groceries to qualify for free parking).

“If parking time limits are an issue and public transport isn’t an option, then it may also be worth shopping in less busy areas to avoid getting delayed, and facing a fine.”

Nottingham was the second-worst place for parking tickets in the UK with four percent of the cities population receiving fines last December.

A total of 11,800 tickets were issued by the council last Christmas with locals twice as likely to get one compared to the UK average.

Edinburgh was the third most likely to pick up a charge with three percent or 14,300 residents receiving tickets.

Just three months ago, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick announced new rules to tackle unfair private parking tickets.

A new Parking Code of Practice and Framework will challenge “rogue firms” who unfairly punish motorists.

The changes aim to eliminate fines for drivers who make genuine mistakes or have special circumstances for staying later.

A maximum cap for parking fiend could also be introduced alongside a new tiered system for offences.

A 10 minute grace period is also being considered to ensure those who are just a few minutes late are not penalised.

Mr Jenrick said: “Our proposals will restore common sense to the way parking fines are issued, while cracking down on the worst offenders who put other people in danger and hinder our emergency services from carrying out their duties.”

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