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Wednesday 17 August 2005 2.20pm
Enforcement action against coaches

Thank you for your email dated 22 July 2005, regarding coaches parking in Tooley Street.

Transport for London enforces the red route network using a number of enforcement resources including Traffic Wardens and Traffic Police Community Support Officers patrolling on foot, bus mounted cameras and roadside static cameras to enforce bus lanes and Enforcement Officers using CCTV cameras enforcing bus lanes, yellow box junctions and red route contraventions.

Where any of the above enforcement activities finds a vehicle contravening the regulations a penalty charge notice (PCN) will be issued. However, in instances where this enforcement is using remote monitoring by CCTV camera, the PCN will not be placed on the vehicle but served to the owner by post. Therefore, even in cases where a vehicle is parked for extended periods, seemingly unnoticed by our enforcement staff, a PCN may have already have been issued remotely.

I have asked our on-street staff to pay particular attention to this location as I am particularly concerned that vehicles are parking on the pelican crossing and in these cases I believe that our aims will be better served by an officer issuing a PCN directly to the vehicle in order to ensure that it is moved as quickly as possible.

Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention.

Yours sincerely

Tope Longe
Enforcement Services Manager
Transport Policing and Enforcement Directorate
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 020 7343 5332




Wednesday 17 August 2005 2.23pm
The above responses to my Emails all sound as if something is being done about the Tour Coaches parking freely at the end of Weavers Lane, unfortunately my own eyes and the photographic records I have tell a different story. If coach companies are being issued with PCN's then then it doesn't deter them (and many visitors to City Hall) from parking on the Tooley Street Red Route.
Wednesday 17 August 2005 3.22pm
Unfortunately, I suspect that some of the coach operators may be budgeting for a PCN along with the congestion charge as part of their costs of including happening Bankside on their tour coach itinerary.
Wednesday 17 August 2005 3.40pm
Why don't you emphasise the cycle-path blocking, and try to get some activist cyclists to take up the cause?

Those monthly Critical Mass rides have police "escorts".

Just an idea. Probably not a tremendously good one.

(Or send the story to the Std, having given it a spin along the lines of "Invading German tourists and Red Ken's visitors bring C-Zone to a grinding halt and block childrens' cycle path"?)


...if you press it, they will come.
Wednesday 17 August 2005 5.26pm
Thank you both for your comments. Both the Evening Standard and SLP have declined to follow up on the issue. Various authorities have issued bland responses or simply ignored my letters/emails. The Email dated 17.8.05 above states that 572 PCN's have been issued in Tooley Street since 2004, including those to coaches - As that is the number issued in 8 months, that averages at c.70 each month, let's be generous and say 2.5 each day ... now considering that many of those will be offences such as parking on a meter which has expired and that Tooley Street is something of a long street. It's not really that an impressive figure when I can look out of my front window at anytime between 8am and midnight and be almost guaranteed to see a Tour Coach or five parked close to the end of Weavers Lane.

Lang Rabbie, you mentioned that coach operators may factor in costs for PCN's - according to TFL drivers get points on their licence for stopping on a Red Route. Looks like the persistent offenders haven't lost any drivers through an accumulation of points.

The evidence of my own eyes (I have yet to see a vehicle being issued with a ticket, if Traffic Wardens do happen along, they either walk by or very occasionally move the vehicle on) says that Tour Coaches are given a special dispensation and indeed I quoted a uniformed officer earlier in this thread who said that they had been instructed to 'turn a blind eye'.
Wednesday 17 August 2005 5.26pm
Thank you both for your comments. Both the Evening Standard and SLP have declined to follow up on the issue. Various authorities have issued bland responses or simply ignored my letters/emails. The Email dated 17.8.05 above states that 572 PCN's have been issued in Tooley Street since 2004, including those to coaches - As that is the number issued in 8 months, that averages at c.70 each month, let's be generous and say 2.5 each day ... now considering that many of those will be offences such as parking on a meter which has expired and that Tooley Street is something of a long street. It's not really that an impressive figure when I can look out of my front window at anytime between 8am and midnight and be almost guaranteed to see a Tour Coach or five parked close to the end of Weavers Lane.

Lang Rabbie, you mentioned that coach operators may factor in costs for PCN's - according to TFL drivers get points on their licence for stopping on a Red Route. Looks like the persistent offenders haven't lost any drivers through an accumulation of points.

The evidence of my own eyes (I have yet to see a vehicle being issued with a ticket, if Traffic Wardens do happen along, they either walk by or very occasionally move the vehicle on) says that Tour Coaches are given a special dispensation and indeed I quoted a uniformed officer earlier in this thread who said that they had been instructed to 'turn a blind eye'.
Thursday 18 August 2005 4.44am
Hi Paul,

It seems to me that TfL are judging their effectiveness by the number of tickets issued (their enforcement output) rather than how clear the street is kept of illegally parked vehicles (what should be their desired enforcement outcome).

Try asking TfL to supply you with any statistics they have on the amount of time the road (and they may even have subdivisions of the road, given the length of Tooley Street) is free of obstructions. Also ask them when they last considered alternative enforcement methods more likely to contribute to parking-free red routes, such as vehicles being towed away and impounded.

If (when) TfL come back to you with answers saying they/the Met don't have statistics on this, or the means to tow vehicles away, that's another thing to go back to Val Shawcross with.

You might also want to try and get the attention of members of the GLA's Transport Committee. The Committee's staff say they are open to suggestions as to what the committee should look into. Obviously, if they were to do an inquiry, it would not just be into this bit of Tooley Street, but into something like illegal parking on red-routes across London. But then you would have the opportunity to go and present the evidence to the Committee in person and hopefully see them hold TfL to account. It may also have the beneficial side-effect of TfL trying to raise their game in anticipation of criticism from the Committee.

Cheers,

Andrew
Thursday 18 August 2005 11.18am
Thank you Andrew - good advice which I'll follow up on.
Thursday 18 August 2005 3.08pm
Hi Paul

Have just seen this thread. Rosie has written to TfL about this (as she explained we don't seem to have received the CD of pictures earlier in the year - although I can actually see the coaches from my desk so no need to send them again).

We'll get back to you when we get a response from TfL, but I expect it will be very similar to the ones you've had. Perhaps we could meet up on Tooley Street to look at the problem and think of alternative approaches to take with TfL. Give me a call on 020 7983 4097.

Regards

Fiona Colley
Researcher for Val Shawcross
GLA Member for Lambeth & Southwark
LONDONASSEMBLYLABOUR

The Greater London Authority
City Hall
Queen's Walk
London
SE1 2AA

Tel: 020 7983 4097
Fax: 020 7983 4418
Thursday 18 August 2005 3.29pm
Paul/Fiona
Please remember this is not just a Tooley Street issue, although I'm sure that's where the main problem is. Queen Elizabeth Street residents suffer in the same way just less often. I hope we can solve the problem in both areas and not just shift it from one place to another.
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