London Councils has published data on parking enforcement and appeals in London for the 2019-20 financial year, ending on March 31st 2020.
This year’s figures show that London boroughs and TfL issued 6,187,220 penalty charge notices (PCNs) to motorists who they believed had contravened parking, bus lane and moving traffic regulations in 2019-20. This represents a 3.85% increase from the previous financial year.
Parking and traffic management provide important benefits for pedestrians, cyclists, motorists and communities throughout London. These include maintaining road safety and access for Londoners to jobs, goods and services.
Traffic rules and regulations also play a critical part in reducing congestion and helping to make London’s streets safer for everyone. Because of a small minority of drivers who fail to follow the rules of the road, enforcement is necessary to encourage all drivers to drive and park in a considerate and safe way.
Since these figures were compiled, public services across the country have transformed to best combat the pressures of the Covid-19 pandemic. Local authorities have adapted their policies to support the pandemic response, including helping the delivery sector in the early stages of lockdown by relaxing controls to aid the transportation of key goods into the capital. They also issued permits for key workers during lockdown to help these individuals to undertake their vital work and services when travel choices were restricted and continue to support care and NHS workers.
The Covid-19 pandemic has put the challenge of London’s traffic congestion front and centre. As we regretfully acknowledge that car usage has increased in light of the pandemic, it is vital that road users have a well-managed parking regime that minimises congestion on London’s streets. Enforcement is necessary to ensure compliance with controls. It also helps to make sure the demand for spaces does not exceed the supply and crucially incentivises the use of active travel such as walking or cycling. This supports the improvement of public health by increasing cleaner air quality for all Londoners.
If drivers believe they have received a PCN in error, they are encouraged to appeal to the enforcement authority that issued the ticket. If they are not satisfied with the outcome, they can submit a free appeal to an independent adjudicator via the relevant independent appeals service at London Tribunals.
Between 2018-19 and 2019-20, the number of appeals in London received by London Tribunals for traffic related contraventions decreased by 3.28%. Appeals were pursued for 0.59% of all PCNs issued.
All income from PCNs is put towards paying for the provision of essential traffic and parking services. Any surplus is invested in other important transport projects, such as the Freedom Pass concessionary travel scheme for older and disabled Londoners.
Mayor Philip Glanville, Chair of London Councils' Transport and Environment Committee, said:
“Traffic and parking management in London is a vital service provided by London’s boroughs and TfL that keeps London’s streets moving.
“Enforcement leads to positive behaviour change among road users which makes the capital’s streets safer for all Londoners and its visitors.
“I am proud of the quick response from London’s authorities in adapting their parking and traffic management services this year to transform our streets to support active travel and help those in the frontline of the pandemic effort. Without the commitment and flexibility of those involved with our well-established enforcement regime, priority for key workers would have been impossible to implement and maintain.”