Around half of all appeals resulted in penalty charge notices being cancelled
According to figures obtained via a number of Freedom of Information requests, it’s been discovered that local councils throughout the UK have overturned 40% of all parking and bus lane fines after they were appealed by the motorists who received them.
This means four in 10 bus lane and parking fines were overturned on appeal, with local councils cancelling tickets for around half of all appeals against penalty charge notices.
Every local authority in the UK was included in the requests which showed that 4.3 million appeals against parking and bus lane fines were lodged between 2012 and 2017 – a total of 1.8 million resulted in a successful appeal.
The highest number of overturned tickets were found within Basingstoke and Dean Council, where 90% of 12,804 appeals that were lodged within a five-year period turned out to be successful.
This equates to a quarter of all bus lane and parking tickets handed out by the council being cancelled altogether. However, since then new parking machines have been installed in 2017 resulting in the number of successful appeals falling.
Meanwhile, Christchurch Borough Council overturned 83% of tickets following an appeal, whilst Nuneaton and Bedworth Council overturned 81%.
As for Aberdeenshire Council, who overturned 70% of tickets on appeal, they said we “generally take the view that the cost of pursuing payment is not the best use of resources”, especially when it comes to first-time offenders.
It was the BBC who obtained the figures following a series of requests sent to 245 local authorities in the UK. They discovered that 84 councils up and down the country overturned more than 50% of all tickets following an appeal.
RAC spokesman Simon Williams said the results were “frightening” because: “They reveal that in a very high proportion of cases drivers have been right to appeal. Councils should learn from this.”
The Local Government Association’s transport spokesman Martin Tett, told the BBC: “As these figures confirm, people who want to challenge a parking fine have access to a clear and effective appeals process.
“Councils have to strike a difficult balance when setting parking policy, to make sure that there are spaces available for residents, high streets are kept vibrant and traffic is kept moving. They also need to ensure that emergency vehicles can get access to incidents quickly.”
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