Martin Lewis explains council and private company parking fines
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Experts have called for incentives to be offered “as a priority” to help bring back customers. Specialists are calling for a “cost-cutting scheme” and parking discounts to ensure people return to their high streets post lockdown.
New research from specialists at ‘takepayments’ has found council-run parking bays were overhauling cheaper than private alternatives.
On average high street shoppers can save £1.20 per hour using council-run bays over private ones while some major cities see even higher differences.
In London, drivers will pay just £5.10 per hour to stop in a council-run bay compared to £11 in a private car park.
Meanwhile, in Bristol and Sheffield, drivers could pay up to £2.88 and £1.92 more in a private car park than a council one.
Drivers in Cardiff would save £1.50 on average parking in a council bay while drivers in Belfast would save £1.92.
Motorists parking in Plymouth and Leicester would save £1.18 and £1.20 parking in a council bay while drivers in Glasgow would save £1.00.
Only private car works in Edinburgh, Birmingham and Norwich charge less than those belonging to a local authority.
However, this cost difference never rose higher than 76p due to the excessively high costs of some private bays.
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The data was taken from the average cost of the five council and privately run parking bays nearest to the main high street.
Sandi Rowley, Head of marketing at takepayments Limited has warned businesses need “further support” as shops begin to slowly reopen.
She said: “Cost friendly parking has always played an integral part in people’s commuting and leisure decisions.
“It can now play a crucial part in the return of the high street.
“Council parking has offered reasonable prices whilst private parking owners operate at an elevated cost in most cases.
“Businesses still need further support from councils to help reinvigorate the high street and parking incentives should be a priority, according to the businesses that are suffering from the effects of multiple national lockdowns.
“A cost-cutting scheme is needed to help these businesses survive what should have been their busiest time for trading.
“When you look at the top three reasons that are causing a quiet high street – working from home, access to online shopping and expensive car parking – the parking is one that we can most easily address whilst still following Government guidelines and keeping people safe.”
The Government has committed to tackling the issues surrounding “cowboy parking firms” to ensure drivers were not being “ripped off” when visiting city centres.
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has confirmed the Government would be putting caps on parking fines and allowing drivers to appeal fines more easily.
Speaking to Express.co.uk last month, he said the Government would tackle the “unregulated” parking industry.
He added: “The Government is putting a stop to this with new caps on parking fines which will cut charges for millions of motorists.
“We are also making it easier for people to appeal charges for minor errors, such as entering a vehicle registration number incorrectly.
“So whether you’re running late or have made a genuine mistake, you can trust that there will be a fairer and clearer way to challenge unfairness when you see it.
“We all want to be out supporting our high streets and I want Express readers to know that we are making life easier for motorists, by putting an end to the days of excessive parking fines and creating a fairer system for drivers.”
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