Laura Sharman 23 July 2013

Barnet loses judicial review into 'unlawful' parking charge

Councils will not be able to use parking charges to raise revenue for other unrelated purposes, according to a judicial review against Barnet Council.

Barnet’s controlled parking zones (CPZ) have been declared illegal by the High Court following a legal challenge by David Attfield. Mr Attfield launched proceedings in 2011 after the council raised the cost of parking permits from £40 to £100 and raised visitor parking from £1 to £4.

The ruling found that the council had misused its powers under the Road traffic Regulation Act 1984 to set charges with a view to raising revenue for unrelated traffic management purposes. The ruling is the first successful one against a local authority parking charges and could see thousands of residents reclaim millions of pounds in unlawful charges.

Mt Attfield said: ‘Barnet Council has been caught picking the pockets of CPZ residents. Despite making up less than 10% of the borough, they were being made to contribute disproportionately to a range of services such as road repairs and the provision of bus passes across the borough.

‘It is regrettable that Barnet has spent over two years, and tens of thousands of pounds standing by their charges which they should have known were legally and morally wrong.’

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