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Bonkers Blog October 2014

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28 October (Part 3) - More money for nothing. Extortion in Abbey Wood

FrizoniThe man you see here is Mike Frizoni whose job it is (among others) to suggest how Bexley council should implement its parking policy, and after it is rubber stamped implements it with gusto. Hence the constant imposition of more yellow lines and the eradication of any remaining free spaces close to popular destinations. His motive is to maximise income which will help him cling on to his £9,469 special allowance which boosts his salary to well over £100k. The way he acts you could be forgiven for thinking he would encourage Bexley’s parking contractor NSL to issue more penalty notices by fair means or foul. Let me give you an example which I see several days a week.

Because Crossrail took away a lot of parking spaces near Abbey Wood Station Frizoni converted two long Residents’ Parking Bays in Abbey Road to mixed use, i.e. Residents’ and Pay and Display. Circumstances are the same on both sides of the road but I usually pass on the northern side so what follows relates only to that.

White lineUntil last year there was a single long bay for residents with an 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. restriction. It was and still is around 150 yards long and a Pay and Display machine was installed close to each extremity. However Pay and Display users cannot park anywhere within those 150 yards, the Pay and Display section is not very long and delineated by a white dividing line.

Non residents who pay the £3.80 fee are not given any information about where exactly they can park and only those users fully aware of the despicable deviousness of Bexley council would give the situation a second thought, they just park close to the machine and go to work; what else would any reasonable person do?

If they were to look for a dividing line they may not find one because a residents’ permit holder can park anywhere which includes letting a 4x4 straddle the line; not that that exacerbates the problem a great deal because as you can see in Photo 2 the line is barely visible anyway.

Parked car PCNSo very often an Abbey Wood station commuter will pay Bexley council an extortionate £1.90 an hour to park in a bay within spitting distance of the ticket machine and be entirely unaware of the smudge in the road or its significance. The crooks who run Bexley council might consider it to be to be a legal white line but few others will.

StephensWhen I first spotted the ticketed Mercedes yesterday the smudge was entirely obscured by a vehicle but by the time I had returned with a camera it had gone. Not far away was a second vehicle which had suffered an identical fate as the Merc.

At last week’s Places Scrutiny Committee meeting, Mr. Ben Stephens said he doesn’t bother to put the full set of instructions on parking signs because it would be impractical to do so. I can understand that he might expect some common sense from motorists but it would appear that it is a very one sided argument. Whatever the IQ of Abbey Wood commuters they are unlikely to work out where they might be safe from persecution. They probably will have more success in working out that Bexley council operates a scam.

For the record, the white line at the other end of the 150 yard long bay is in very much better condition, but it is still usually hidden under a resident’s vehicle.


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