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Drivers face paying £690 to park near their own HOME

A Labour-run council has ramped up the price of parking permits to up a whopping £690 in the latest escalation of the capital’s war on motorists. 

Merton Council in south-west London wants to boost the amount people have to pay to park outside their own homes in a bid to cut air pollution. 

It is believed the permits would be the most expensive in Britain.

Charges for the most polluting cars will cost up to £540 per year, in addition to the existing £150 levy for all diesel vehicles and older petrol models.

It has sparked fears more councils will look to hike their prices. It is thought the move could add as much as £1million a year to the authority’s coffers.

It comes after:  

  • London Mayor Sadiq Khan was blasted for ‘stinging motorists’ over his plans for a £3.50 ‘border tax’ for people travelling into the city; 
  • New figures showed town halls have squandered nearly £1m after being forced to scrap controversial Covid cycle lanes;
  • It followed a damning ruling by a High Court judge that Mr Khan’s ‘Streetspace’ scheme that saw lanes introduced in was ‘unlawful’; 
  • Prompted residents in five London boroughs to take the fight against ‘Low Traffic Neighbourhoods’ to the high court;
  • AA predicted that 350,000 motorists will hit with £12.50 daily charge after extension of the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in London later this year;
  • Fed up residents illuminated Hammersmith Bridge in red in Valentine’s Day protest as vital crossing looks set to be closed for years.  
Labour-run Merton Council is looking to drive up the cost of on-street parking permits in a bid to drive down air pollution. Pictured is a road in the council area

Labour-run Merton Council is looking to drive up the cost of on-street parking permits in a bid to drive down air pollution. Pictured is a road in the council area

Labour-run Merton Council is looking to drive up the cost of on-street parking permits in a bid to drive down air pollution. Pictured is a road in the council area 

Merton Council’s permit scheme sparked an immediate backlash today. 

Paul Biggs, environment spokesman for the Association of British Drivers, said: ‘We don’t support parking charges being based on CO2 emissions any more than we would support a train ticket being based on shoe size.

‘Parking is a service and the charges should reflect the service provided.’

Critics said it could also punish less wealthy people who don’t have big houses with driveways, who have to resort to on-street parking and use older car models.

Merton Council estimates the owner of a 2016 Ford Focus who lives in a medium-tier controlled parking zone would face a hike of £60 a year to £170.

Owners of a 2015 Skoda Yeti would also face an increase of £150 to £260 for a permit.

An annual pass for a 1999 Mercedes Benz E-class diesel would rise by £390 to £650 under the scheme.

The local authority dismissed objections raised during public consultations.

A council report said: ‘Charges have been considered and set at levels which will disincentivise car ownership and use and encourage consideration of lower emission vehicles.’ 

The local authority said extra money raised could ‘potentially be reinvested directly into measures to support complementary sustainable transport measures’.  

London Mayor Sadiq Khan - pictured receiving his Covid jab earlier this month - has been accused of waging a 'war' on motorists

London Mayor Sadiq Khan - pictured receiving his Covid jab earlier this month - has been accused of waging a 'war' on motorists

London Mayor Sadiq Khan – pictured receiving his Covid jab earlier this month – has been accused of waging a ‘war’ on motorists  

TOP 10 LONDON LOCAL AUTHORITIES FOR PARKING FINE REVENUES
Council PCN’s issued Total revenue Average fine Location with highest number
London Borough of Newham 239,000 £10,625,600.00 £44.46 Browning road
London Borough of Haringey 137,415 £9,898,840.00 £72.04 High Road N17
London Borough of Ealing 157,759 £8,372,318.20 £53.07 Longfield Avenue/New Broadway
London Borough of Redbridge 132,084 £6,484,034.21 £49.09 Ilford Lane
London Borough of Enfield 131,820 £6,071,032.00 £46.06 Montagu Road/Conduit Lane
London Borough of Lambeth 121,895 £6,023,222.76 £49.41 Acre Lane
London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham 117,098 £5,570,366.00 £47.57 Macfarlane Road
London Borough of Islington 132,582 £5,479,328.00 £41.33 St John Street
London Borough of Brent 105,986 £4,662,650.00 £43.99 Kingsbury Road
London Borough of Bexley 129,667 £4,361,000.00 £33.63 Bellegrove Road, Welling
Source: FOI to local councils by Compare the Market in August 2020 
TOP 10 LOCAL AUTHORITIES OUTSIDE OF LONDON FOR PARKING FINE REVENUES
Council  PCN’s issued Total revenue Average fine Location with highest number
City of Glasgow 104,938 £5,484,781.03 £52.27 Wellington Street
Birmingham City Council 112,735 £3,951,065.00 £35.05 Alum Rock Road
Brighton and Hove City Council 106,037 £2,835,025.64 £26.74 Madeira Drive
Liverpool City Council    63,831 £2,495,815.00 £39.10 Mount Pleasant Car Park
East Sussex County Council    42,531 £2,029,072.00 £47.71 High Street, Lewes
Newcastle upon Tyne City Council    59,013 £1,880,248.91 £31.86 Dean Street Multi Story
Medway Council    64,648 £1,577,274.29 £24.40 Blue Boar Lane Car Park
Bournemouth Borough Council    57,118 £1,544,610.00 £27.04 Chirstchurch Road, Bournemouth
Cardiff Council    49,781 £1,489,450.00 £29.92 Windsor Place, Cardiff City Centre
Oxfordshire County Council    42,525 £1,411,739.00 £33.20 St Giles, Oxford
Source: FOI to local councils by Compare the Market in August 2020 

The move is the latest step in what motoring groups describe as a sustained campaign to force them off the roads.   

Last month, it emerged that lockdown cycle lanes could be ripped up across the UK after the High Court ruled Sadiq Khan’s ‘Streetspace’ scheme was unlawful.

The controversial scheme, which saw roads closed and others narrowed to create new cycle lanes in the height of lockdown last year, was found to be ‘seriously flawed’ by a High Court judge. 

Many of the temporary cycle lanes in London – including one on High Street Kensington in the west of the capital – have now been removed after an outcry from motorists and local businesses. 

In total, town halls across the country squandered nearly £1million on similar road schemes which were then removed. 

Freedom of Information requests were sent to local authorities across the country by AutoExpress.

They found that 138 schemes have been completed, with 13 having to be scrapped and 25 altered after a backlash from residents and emergency services.

Last month, it emerged that lockdown cycle lanes could be ripped up across the UK after the High Court ruled Sadiq Khan's 'Streetspace' scheme was unlawful. Pictured is one of the temporary cycle lanes on the Euston Road

Last month, it emerged that lockdown cycle lanes could be ripped up across the UK after the High Court ruled Sadiq Khan's 'Streetspace' scheme was unlawful. Pictured is one of the temporary cycle lanes on the Euston Road

Last month, it emerged that lockdown cycle lanes could be ripped up across the UK after the High Court ruled Sadiq Khan’s ‘Streetspace’ scheme was unlawful. Pictured is one of the temporary cycle lanes on the Euston Road  

Mr Khan oversaw the rapid construction of a cycling network using temporary plastic bollards

Mr Khan oversaw the rapid construction of a cycling network using temporary plastic bollards

Mr Khan oversaw the rapid construction of a cycling network using temporary plastic bollards 

In total £974,000 was spent on reversing temporary traffic measures such as pop-up cycle lanes and road closures, with a further £86,000 spent on alterations.

However, the real costs are thought to be much higher as some town halls did not provide calculations for the total amount spent on failed schemes.

A total of £7.7million has been spent on 138 completed schemes, with a further 76 planned at a cost of £7.1million.

Fed-up locals illuminate Hammersmith Bridge in red in Valentine’s Day protest

Fed up residents illuminated Hammersmith Bridge in red in a Valentine’s Day protest after it was closed six months ago and may not reopen for years.

The 133-year-old west London bridge has been closed to traffic since April 2019 when cracks appeared in its pedestals.

It then closed to pedestrian, cyclist and river traffic in August after a heatwave caused the faults to ‘significantly increase’.

Residents projected a message onto the bridge to mark the six-month anniversary of its full closure.

 

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The measures are part of so-called ‘low traffic neighbourhood’ (LTN) schemes encouraged by the Department for Transport to increase cycling and walking and drive down car use.

In January, Justice Lang ruled London’s ‘Streetspace’ scheme was ‘seriously flawed’ and ‘took advantage of the pandemic’ to push through ‘radical’ and permanent changes to London’s roads.

The judgment followed a legal challenge by organisations representing black cab drivers who were angry about being banned from a new bus-only route on the A10 in Bishopsgate.

Justice Lang said the A10 scheme treated cab drivers unfairly and should be abolished.

The ruling means similar schemes implemented by councils up and down the country could now be scrapped, a lawyer in the case revealed.

However bosses at Transport for London, who described the ruling as ‘disappointing’, insist they will keep the make-shift cycle lanes while they appeal today’s damning judgment.

In December, Mr Khan was attacked for threatening to charge non-Londoners £3.50 to drive in the capital unless he is allowed to keep £500million from London car taxes.

The Mayor claimed it was unfair the vehicle excise duty, which is collected from drivers in the city, is spent mostly elsewhere.

He suggested a scheme like the Greater London Boundary Charge could reduce the number of journeys by up to 15 per cent and raise £500million a year.

Fed up residents illuminated Hammersmith Bridge in red in a Valentine's Day protest after it was closed six months ago and may not reopen for years

Fed up residents illuminated Hammersmith Bridge in red in a Valentine's Day protest after it was closed six months ago and may not reopen for years

Fed up residents illuminated Hammersmith Bridge in red in a Valentine’s Day protest after it was closed six months ago and may not reopen for years 

Mr Khan hinted he could charge people more if they drive less eco-friendly vehicles over the threshold to force them to change to cleaner models.

The Greater London Conservatives branded his proposals ‘devastating’, said it would ‘hammer struggling businesses’ and ‘would hurt the poorest’.

Tory member Tony Devenish slammed it as a tax on ‘enjoying our capital on the entire country’ and called Mr Khan ‘a spiteful little man’.

It comes as an independent review of Transport for London’s future funding found a tax on non-Londoners in the city could help traffic and emissions and raise money. 

Meanwhile, from October, London motorists are set to be hit with charges as part of an extension to the capital’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ). 

The ULEZ launched in April 2109 and was meant to help drive down pollution in London by charging motorists that came into the area in vehicles exceeding the low emission criteria.

Drivers of cars which do not meet the required standards face a £12.50 daily charge for entering the zone.     

In December, Mr Khan was attacked for threatening to charge non-Londoners £3.50 to drive in the capital unless he is allowed to keep £500million from London car taxes. File photo of cars in London

In December, Mr Khan was attacked for threatening to charge non-Londoners £3.50 to drive in the capital unless he is allowed to keep £500million from London car taxes. File photo of cars in London

In December, Mr Khan was attacked for threatening to charge non-Londoners £3.50 to drive in the capital unless he is allowed to keep £500million from London car taxes. File photo of cars in London 

Source: Daily Mail |World News

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