Bexhill on Sea is the only town centre I know where I can park free of charge all day without incurring a penalty.
There is no deterrent because I won’t be held to account.
Rother District Council (RDC) is one of only 17 local authorities in England which has left parking enforcement to be handled by the police (i.e. a criminal offence): the other 633 local authorities have taken responsibility for parking in their areas, (where it remains a civil offence).
In these areas, there are parking wardens to encourage compliance; and, where necessary, to issue tickets. At a Bexhill town forum meeting in September, local divisional commander Chief Inspector Ross made it clear she would not entertain any practical measures for enforcement of regulations in the town.
I suggest two potential solutions, one for the short-term and one for a longer-term answer.
In the first instance, the police should review their stance. Why not have two Police Community Support Officers (the clue is in the title) spend four or five hours, for two consecutive day shifts in Bexhill, cracking down on the most obvious and blatant offenders? If they were to issue a flurry of tickets, then we would all be less likely to offend in the future.
This action would need to be taken only on an occasional basis. The deterrent effect would be there. For the longer term, RDC should do what 97 per cent of other local authorities have done and take their responsibilities practically and more seriously, rather than shoving their obligations rather cynically on to the local police.
Let RDC take responsibility for parking in this area for the benefit of all.
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