Monday, July 6

How to blow £260

Our car was impounded today. For several weeks Camden council has been operating temporary parking restrictions as it progressively repairs the pavement on our street. Restrictions began this morning on a new section, exactly where we'd parked the Saab. We'd naively assumed we'd have most of the day to move it. This wasn't to be. £260 later and the car was released from the local pound.

It seems we're in good company. Last financial year (ending March 2008) Camden Council towed 4,314 cars, generating almost £841,000 in fines and pound storage fees. Incredibly, the council issued 529,874 parking violation notices during the same period. In 2005 London councils made £1.16 billion from parking charges and fines, almost twice the value of revenue they raised through Council Tax (i.e. council rates). Parking fines are big business in this country!

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