Your Story

I am not surprised by the CPZ Newss. This is one of a number of "questionable" policies Ms Pam Wharfe and others have tried to impose on Barnet Residents! In October 2012 Ms Wharfe approved plans to seek removal of resident parking bays to free up space for teachers to park at a subsidised rate. Apparently these folks were not willing to take public transport like most Londoners and requested subsidised parking arrangements be made for them. Despite a tube station being a 5min walk away and numerous bus routes stopping right outside.

Ms Wharfe wasted public funds, prepared plans, held discussions and sent out notices for the plan she somehow agreed to sponsor which involved provisions to park all day for a flat rate of £1.50 whilst tax paying residents were charged almost double. Plans also included opening parking to anyone who wished make use of it....notably commuters to park and ride. Seems CPZ is not being implemented to control Parking Congestion as the Lawful Act stipulates it should....these people in power are abusing their rights. Who knows what other skeletons remain and what is driving this need to walk over tax paying residents?

In light of the CPZ case and a huge backlash from residents it seems Ms Warfe and her colleagues stood down from moving forward but not before wasting public money on a poorly and unfairly conceived plan.
This money could have repaired numerous pot holes in nearby roads which remain to this day.

Surely Ms Wharfe should now resign from her post!
JP - 23rd July 2013

Congratulations on the result yesterday. 

I spent about £1000 on day vouchers for builders, plumbers, electricians, etc when we renovated our house over the last year. Am considering whether yesterday's verdict means we can write asking for a part-refund.

An older neighbour regularly moans about the car parking cost, which he remembers was introduced with the promise it would be cheap, and just a way of controlling the parking levels, only for the prices to be significantly hiked up. I introduced him to your campaign last week and he very impressed.
JD - 23rd July 2013

Notified by Barnet Council that I was in the Copthall CPZ so duly applied for parking permit and visitor vouchers (free) but Barnet have failed to put up any signage along my section of the road and visitors to Copthall park there forcing residents and visitors to park well away from their homes.  I have great diffculty in walking and either have to stay in or not have visitors unless they arrive before 1 pm.   Residents in this area exist.  Remember Barnet do not  have signs so your parking tickets will be classed as invalid.  Barnet do not care. Anyone else have the same problem?

SL - 2nd July 2013

I moved down to London in August 2011 from Scotland. During the first month I had a car which was registered in my mother's name. I got dispensation for parking as I was not sure if I was going to keep the car down here or not. During this period I got a ticket which I contested and I thought it had been rescinded. In April of this year my mother received a letter stating that a parking ticket was still unpaid and bailiffs were going to get involved if no action was taken in the next two weeks. I sent an email to Barnet Parking on the 4th April which I have still not got a response from. I phoned the parking department and was told that there were in fact two tickets issued and they confirmed in the end that both had been rescinded. I was told that a letter would be sent out to my mother to confirm this. To this date nothing has been received. Apart from this letter there has been no other reminder letters in the intravening 18 month period. I have now got my local councillors involved with the hope of drawing a line under the incident.
AL - 1st May 2013

RE: Proposed Introduction for a New Controlled Parking Zone in Hampstead Way, Willifield Way, Temple Fortune Hill, Asmuns Hill
I strongly object to this proposed CPZ because:

(1) It is totally unnecessary to introduce a CPZ in this area. This is because there is always plenty of free parking available for residents in the proposed CPZ area. There is never a problem with non-resident parking here because there is no commuter parking, as the nearest tube station is a 20 minute walk away. The area is also a good 10 minutes’ walk away from the nearest shops at Temple Fortune, so does not attract any volume of non-resident parking. There are no visitor attractions in the immediate vicinity that would ever attract lots of non-resident vehicles to be parked in roads in this proposed CPZ zone. Therefore, there is no high volume whatsoever of non-resident parking taking place on the uncontrolled sections of the roads in the proposed CPZ. Consequently, there is absolutely no need for this proposed CPZ.

(2) The introduction of the proposed CPZ will cause stress to residents as it will make it harder to park, as there will be fewer parking spaces available as a result of the parking zones and yellow lines. A new CPZ scheme would also make it more difficult to have guests and tradesmen visit residents due to the parking restrictions.

(3) The additional cost incurred as a result of the proposed CPZ will cause considerable financial hardship to residents in the area, especially in these extremely constrained economic times. This is particularly the case for the large volume of retired people living in the area, who will not be able to afford the additional expense of parking permits.

(4) I live in one of the two squares off Hampstead Way, of which there are several in the area. My particular cause for concern relating to these squares is that having a CPZ in the main road will encourage unpermitted vehicles to park in the squares, which will cause unnecessary stress and inconvenience to residents.

It would appear that the introduction of even more unnecessary residents parking zones in the Suburb is clearly another money-making scheme for the Council.

DR, NW11 - 25th March 2013

I live in Mayfield Avenue, North Finchley, at the end of the road away from the main High Road. Our road and adjacent ones have been in the Barnet CPZ for some years (though my household had voted against it). It never made any sense at all that there was a 6 day, 9am-5pm restriction in a road that is not near the shopping area nor near a station. 
Conversley, roads near Woodside Park Station and roads in Finchley Central close to the shops only have a 1 hr, 2pm - 3pm restriction.
In common with other car-owning households, I pay an inflated sum to park outside my home and the cost of parking vouchers is prohibitive. If my family or friends wish to visit, or there is a family gathering, it needs to be planned for a Sunday when the restricitions are lifted.
Barnet show a complete lack of logic in their CPZ strategy. I would urge that these restrictions are lifted as a best case scenario. Failing that, at the very least, parking restrictions in these roads should be limited -though no-one would be thinking of parking here in order to commute and leave their car for the day. What possible justification could there be for the current CPZ restriction here? I am aware that the answer is simple - it's an easy way for theLocal Authority to levy money.
an unhappy resident

DR, N12 - 23rd March 2013

Barnet Council are selling people visitor vouchers at over £4 each when they could buy them for £2. They do not tell permit holders who have an existing reference number to buy visitor vouchers that the price has gone down for some vouchers. It's blatant profiteering on the part of the council. Demand a refund.

CK - 11th March 2013

I have just had sight of the map of Mill Hill showing Saracens Club proposals to control parking during their event calendar - It turns Mill Hill into one large CPZ 'no go' area and will I'm sure provide Barnet Council with a huge money-taking machine [no doubt to be efficiently managed by their favorite contractor under One Barnet].  I now see the hidden agenda in the Council's enthusiasm and haste to give Saracens Club planning approval - until now the unilateral imposition of CPZ on residents of Barnet have been thwarted by the valiant defensive efforts of Barnet CPZ Action - this brave and honourable bastion will be breached if this proposal is approved, and life in Mill Hill will be the worse for it.  Do Barnet Council really care ?....I wonder.  It must be stopped!
Mike Fisher, NW7 - 5th September 2012

The introduction of the 1/2 day voucher is not good at all - As you know that the council have a cpz which operates from 9am to 10pm Monday to Sunday - What I don't understand how is the half day vouchers will work - One will think the half day voucher in this CPZ will operate for a maximum of 6 hours and half since the cpz operates for 13 hours. However having contacted the Council and speaking to the operation manager John Wild he has confirmed that the half day voucher has a maximum hours of 4 hours only- after 4 hours you cannot use the voucher. Clearly this cheating the residents.

What happens to people living in one hour cpz - does half day voucher really works just using for half an hour.

Clearly the council did not think this properly.

CM - 3rd September 2012

I hold a Mums and Babes group at my house once a month and have done for the last four years.  Most mums (between 5 and 7 mums at any one time) come from outside of the borough and do not live in CPZs themselves.  I haven't even told them how much the vouchers cost as it may prevent some from coming.  It is also far too difficult for a new mum to transport their new-born and all the paraphernalia you think you need when you're new mum venturing out for the first time, to park in the nearest car park or attend to 'paying by mobile'.  Sadly, it's costing me a fortune but the group has proven to be a lifeline to some mums who need a change of scenery, a cup of tea made by a friend and a chance to ask their burning questions to other mums.

I also want to applaud your action and whatever the outcome - glad it's looking a bit more favourable now - I feel encouraged that your voice of reason (on many of our behalf's) is being heard.  Thank you so much and please keep going.
LJT, N12 - 3rd May 2012

Re the outrageous parking charges, did you know that Barnet Council also increased the 3 month temporary residents permit (which my non-co-habiting partner used to buy) from £40 to £252 ?
Yes, £252 - a quarter !  Needless to say, my partner no longer stays at my house. 
Brian Coleman - killer of love-lives

Outraged of N12 - 25th April 2012

Barnet Tory councillor uses free parking permit to canvass for Boris: - after putting visitor permits up from £1 to £4. 

Councillor Hugh Rayner made a mistake using his free council parking permit on Edgware High Street so he could hand out election leaflets supporting Brian Coleman and Boris Johnson.  His mistake was - to get caught.

From Barnet Times 11th April:

A Barnet councillor is under investigation following accusations he abused the use of a free members parking permit.

All Conservative members of the authority are given the badges, which cost the average resident £100 per year, to use while carrying out council duties.

But Tory Councillor Hugh Rayner (Hale ward) allegedly used the permit while canvassing for Boris Johnson’s mayoral election campaign yesterday morning.

Labour activist Adam Langleben, who was leafleting for the GLA elections at the same time, posted the accusations on his live blog and called on the Hendon Conservative chairman to respond. 

But the politician has failed to reply to the Labour committee member and Barnet Council has today confirmed it is investigating the complaint.

In a statement, a representative said: "Members' permits are available to councillors and members of parliament for official use only.

"We have received a complaint about the misuse of a member's permit which we are currently investigating. It would be inappropriate to comment any further at this stage."

Barnet’s Labour group refused to take up the offer of the free permits when they were introduced by the Conservative cabinet last year.

Group leader Councillor Alison Moore said: "I am genuinely shocked. The Conservative councillors have always maintained that they only use these parking permits when they are on council business.

“If they really are using their free councillor parking permits to park and go canvassing or campaigning, this is an abuse of what is a privilege afforded them to do their job as a ward councillor. 

“They have imposed punitive parking charge increases across the borough that are crippling local residents and businesses, and still keep these free parking permits for themselves - this really is stark evidence of why we really are not all ‘in it together’ as the Tories claim.”

When contacted by the Times Series, Cllr Rayner said he would not respond to the claims until Thursday morning and refused to comment further.
GS, N2 - 12th April 2012

We were visiting my parents house behind Mill Hill Broadway on a Friday evening as we have done every week for 10 years. Due to the number of people parking on their street to visit the restaurants on the Broadway and the fact that we have a young child, we park across my parents' driveway, with their permission. Last week we returned to the car to find a parking ticket. The ticket stated that we had been issued a PCN due to the fact that we were parked 'adjacent to a footway'. 

The dropped kerb is part of their driveway, my fathers car was parked in the driveway. They issued us with a £110 fine and refused the appeal when we stated that the law says that you can park with the homeowners permission. 

This is a disgusting, money grabbing practice and totally uncalled for.  Barnet Council cannot twist the law to suit them so that they can make as much money as possible from residents and their genuine visitors.
JW - 22nd February 2012

"I had a chat with the people who empty the meters and they told me Tuesday is their last day of work as ALL the machines will be turned off.   Not a single one of them has yet been given a redundancy notice.  They have all been told come in to work as normal even though there is nothing for them to do.   What a waste of money."
DB - 10th November 2011

"Read the ST piece with great interest and the email on your blog - I sent a virtually identical email to the Barnet Parking dept email address I always use and it's twice come back undeliverable - I wonder if they have blocked the address because of volume of queries?  I must say I've always found the parking dept to be very fair and helpful.  Anyway, good luck with your campaign.
One thought to share on helping local businesses - Borehamwood have a great system whereby anyone can park free on their high street for 30 or 40 minutes - after which they are charged. Does what it's supposed to do - lets people use local shops while preventing commuter parking." 
CK - 9th October 2011

"I wondered, and this may be something you have considered, but is there any way under Human Rights Act or Equality Act that we can launch some charge against Barnet, eg why is this part of East Finchley being targeted - surely the whole of Barnet should have to pay for parking - Equality?   Our rights are being removed because we are being singled out in these few roads and there is no valid reason why the restrictions are between 10am and 6.30pm six days a week.

We cannot have friends round to see us unless we pay a premium etc etc.
Just a thought.  I don't know the law but I feel really persecuted and bullied in to having to pay for the privilege of HAVING FRIENDS!   I have seriously considered moving because of the parking situation at the moment.  I cannot afford to see friends for a quick half hour.  My rights as a free citizen of this country are being eroded. "
DB, N2 - 17th August 2011

CPZ is on Barnet's website? Obviously Barnet think they only need to show the maps to people who use Windows, so every mac or Firefox user is barred from viewing the maps. So much for 'More Choice'."
JB - 17th August 2011

"My father parked outside my house in a P&D bay, the P&D machine did not accept coins - it had been broken for some time. He is disabled and as there were no other parking available close by he had no choice but to park there but we put a note in the windown explaining why he could not buy a ticket.
When he returned to find a parking ticket on his screen i wrote to the council to explain and expected them to dismiss the ticket but was told that my father should have either found another parking space or called up to pay by phone. It is a disgrace how the council can treat people like this and i am furious at the rise in permits - how do they expect a young family to afford this!"
Carly Destro  - 14th July 2011

"Besides for not being able to park in a residents bay on my road at night time, due to loads of cars parked in order for their owners to go round the corner to restaurants, my road and the roads around are completely empty during the day since no-one else besides for residents may park there. The street parking bays are empty as residents with cars are usually out working during the day. Shops are doing badly on Golders Green Road in my area as shoppers either dont want to pay the pay and display prices, or have nowhere to park free of charge in the side streets. Besides for around 10 spaces, there is no where for the parents, visitors, therapists, maintanance workman, and more importantly teachers of Menorah Primary School to park between 10-11 a.m. Where does Barnet expect teachers who carry heavy loadfalls of books and work to park during that hour. Should school just shut down during that hour due to teachers and other visitors having to move their cars so that they dont receive a PCN in the whole 1/4 mile radius around the school!!!"
NW11 resident  - 14th July 2011 

"We live in an area where the CPZ is seven days a week, 8 30 - 6 30 ( from 9 30 Sundays).  So to have any visitors before evening we will have to pay very much more than now. We do not mind paying a reasonable amount, but this unwarrented and huge increase has angered us very much.  We therefore support the action and will be donating to it."
David Lawrence - 10th July 2011

"I own an office building at the northern end of High St. Edgware. The difficulties encountered by my shop tenants at this extremity of the retail footprint are exacerbated by high parking charges which discourage shoppers from using these shops.
The office tenants complain that their staff who drive to work are having to park great distances away because of parking restrictions.

Finally, if one wonders why high streets are declining and shopping centres like Brent Cross are thriving you need look no further than parking charges, traffic wardens and convenience. A very simple action to take to reverse this trend would be for the government to impose a nominal charge of say .50p to park in shopping malls and to make local shopping parking free, or almost free.
This would bring people back to their local shops and rejuvenate the high streets."
Jonathan Phillips - 10th July 2011

"As a result of the removal of free parking bays in Welgarth Road and Hampstead Way, there is now significant congestion in Wildwood Road on the other side of the Heath as commuters have moved where they park. This is, of course, Barnet's intention because they will then get requests from residents who are newly affected to extend the parking zone into Wildwood Road."
NW11 resident - 6th July 2011

"I am appalled and incensed at the injustice at having to pay the increased parking charges. I disagreed with parking charges from the start, on the principle that if I pay council tax why should I pay to park outside my own house. It seems that any resident who does not have a garage or drive has to pay for the rest of the Borough.
As a sociable person I have a lot of visitors during the day. For me this means I get through at least a 100 visitor permits in a year. At the end of the year I will be either broke or very lonely! I have children and grandchildren who visit several times a week how do I say I can't afford their visits?"
N Antoniou - 20th June 2011

"I recently (May 2011) moved from a non CPZ area to a CPZ area, when i moved I was told by the estate agent that the price for a parking permit was around £40. I was astonished when I actually investigated this and discovered the price hike to £100. I contacted Barnet Council's parking department around a month before my move to try and discuss how quickly I could get a permit (and whether I could use some sort of temporary permit whilst actually moving in). I am still to receive a reply. I have since purchased a permit at the inflated price of £100. I did this begrudgingly purely because after parking my car around 100 yards down the road (outside of the CPZ) it got broken into and so I felt it was necessary to pay the extortionate price of the permit purely for my safety and peace of mind. I feel cheated by Barnet Council since I see no justification in the increase of permit price and feel as though I have been pushed into a corner where I had to buy the permit as whatever price they deemed worthy. I wholly support the efforts of this legal action against the Council and will be eagerly following its progress."
N12 resident - 10 June 2011

"I regularly host lunchtime trustee meetings for at least two trusts that I am involved with at my home in Finchley Central, which is subject to a 1 hour (2-3pm) CPZ for the purpose of stopping commuter parking for users of Finchley Central tube. 
The visitor vouchers used to cost £1 each and now are being charged at £4 per use. 
I can see no justification for such an increase in charges. "

David Brown, N12 - 2nd June 2011

"Thanks for fighting on our behalf, we hope you are successful"     
2nd June 2011       

"This only encourages people to tarmac their front gardens, so that they may be used as visitors' parking which is unsightly, unsafe for pedestrians and far from environmental."             
J McDaniel, N12 - 12th May 2011