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Lincoln, Boston, Stamford, Louth and Grantham among county’s parking fine hotspots revealed…. in highest year on record for tickets being dished out

Lincolnshire’s parking fine hotspots have been revealed.

Dishing out tickets to illegally parked motorists raised almost £1.5 million for Lincolnshire County Council last year – the highest number of fines dished out on record.

This saw a £16,000 profit for the authority, its first in three years.

Silver Street, Lincoln. Photo: Google Maps
Silver Street, Lincoln. Photo: Google Maps

The top locations for parking fines have been identified, with Silver Street in Lincoln leading at 1,390 yellow stickers.

The second most tickets were handed out was 993 at Market Place, Boston.

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In third spot was Broad Street, Stamford with 686 tickets.

Market Place, Boston. Photo: Google Maps
Market Place, Boston. Photo: Google Maps

Other hotspots were West Street, Boston (579); Eastgate, Louth (562); Lumley Road, Skegness (535); St Peters Hill, Grantham (484); Wide Bargate, Boston (473), Bath Row, Stamford (471); Sea Road, Anderby Creek (441).

Figures showed 2022/23 was the highest year on record for fines being issued according to officers, with 37,445 tickets handed out, up on the previous year’s 35,292 and 24,225 in 2020/21, which was affected by the Covid pandemic.

The total income including penalty charges for the 2022/23 financial year reached £1,499,317, against enforcement costs of £1,483,122.

Broad Street, Stamford. Photo: Google Maps
Broad Street, Stamford. Photo: Google Maps

Of the fines issued, 4,891 were appealed, with 1,641 (34%) subsequently allowed.

A further 40 were taken to Traffic Penalty Tribunal appeal with 11 allowed, 14 not contested and 15 rejected.

The income generated from these fines is earmarked for enforcement services, parking facilities, and various transport and environmental projects.

Eastgate, Louth. Photo: Google Maps
Eastgate, Louth. Photo: Google Maps

This financial turnaround is a significant shift from the previous two years, where the council faced deficits – £100,511 in 2020/21 and £48,668 in 2021/22.

A parking fine is £70 or £50, reduced by 50% if paid within 14 days.

However, the council faces a growing challenge.

St Peters Hill, Grantham. Photo: Google Maps
St Peters Hill, Grantham. Photo: Google Maps

“The level of penalty charge has remained static for many years whilst costs, especially for staff and travel, continue to climb,” the report warned, highlighting concerns over rising operational costs.

“This leads to an inevitable crossover where cost can exceed income. How to minimise or eliminate this financial burden whilst continuing to deliver the service in line with council policy will continue to be the main priority going forward.”

In recent years, the council has faced annual deficits, primarily due to increases in the National Living Wage, which significantly impacted the monthly costs of enforcement contracts.

These costs are projected to rise further from April 2024. Despite these rising expenses, the charge for a Penalty Charge Notice (PCN) has not changed for many years, a situation that predates the introduction of Civil Parking Enforcement in Lincolnshire in 2012.

The British Parking Association is advocating for a government review to potentially increase the monetary levels of PCNs, a move that is closely monitored by local authorities for future implications.

In addition to urban areas, the council has taken action at Lincolnshire Coastal Country Park, including car parks at Anderby Creek, Chapel Six Marshes, Huttoft Car Terrace, Marsh Yard, and Wolla Bank.

In 2022/23, there were 37,765 transactions made for the car parks in the coastal country park, with an income from car park charges of £98,711.

The busiest was Anderby Creek car park, with 14,113 tickets sold for an income of £37,652.

During the meeting, councillors discussed parking management with Matt Jones, parking services manager.

They addressed the quieter period in Lincoln due to the absence of the Christmas market and the cost-neutrality of parking permit schemes.

Concerns were raised about officer allocation between school patrols and resident parking, with Jones assuring efficient deployment.

Discussions also touched on staff turnover challenges and the parking service’s reserve fund, which currently stands at around £800,000.

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