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Bonkers Blog February 2010

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1 February - Parking shop closes, that’s fine then - click any image for photo gallery (2 images)

Gestapo car Gestapo carThe News Shopper came late this week so I’ve only just noticed the latest announcement from that nasty piece of work, councillor Craske. It has been possible until recently to deal with parking issues in a variety of ways; on line, by phone, by post, with cash in Erith or in person at the ‘Parking Shop’ in Bexleyheath Broadway. However on 29th January the shop closed. According to the council the reduced access to parking services is to “make services easier to access” and Craske, the council’s transport motormouth reminds us that, “Instead of having to go to pay their penalty charge notices, motorists can now do so from the comfort of their own home”.

Notice how Craske’s statement implies that paying parking penalties is a civic honour that we should be proud to be paying, but even on the most optimistic interpretation of the council’s own statistics one in six tickets are issued wrongly, and that’s only counting those who decide to challenge them. How is Craske’s grand plan going to help that one in six? Things can only be made more difficult by the total loss of face to face contact. Emailing and writing is fraught with difficulty because Bexley council cannot resist lying and law breaking. For Craske to present this change as an improvement illustrates only too well why he is not fit for office.

The photographs above come from a resident of Northumberland Heath and show the council’s gestapo car parked on a yellow line last week while videoing anyone who stopped for a moment. They are supposed to put up warning signs when doing this but in my experience only one sign is ever displayed. I can’t see it in either photograph but I expect one is around somewhere. When I spoke to the driver last December she said the car didn’t monitor yellow line offences, only bus stops and school zigzags etc.

It is interesting that the car is still emblazoned with the Vinci Parking Services logo when Bexley’s website says that they were ditched in favour of NSL Services Group at the end of last year.

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