Private parking firms hit British drivers with 1.6MILLION more fines in last financial year


Private parking firms issued almost a quarter (24%) more tickets in 2019-20 compared with the previous 12 months.


Companies handed out 8.4 million tickets to British drivers during the last financial year, RAC Foundation analysis of DVLA data has found. This is up from 6.8 million in 2018-19.

The data suggests tickets are being issued at a rate of one every four seconds. In 2006–07 just 272,000 tickets were issued.


Parking companies can obtain vehicle keeper records from the DVLA to chase car owners for alleged infringements in private car parks. Each resultant ticket can cost drivers up to £100.


Steve Gooding, Director of the RAC Foundation, said: “Anyone who received a private parking ticket last year would have been in plentiful company – yet again the number of keeper addresses released by the DVLA to private parking companies has shot up, this time by almost a quarter.

“To put the numbers in context, if every one of the 8.4 million releases came with a ticket to the next Glastonbury festival Michael Eavis would have to re-run the event over 60 times to fit everyone in.”


Sir Greg Knight MP’s Parking (Code of Practice) Bill officially became law in March 2019 with the aim of bringing rogue parking firms into line or putting them out of business. It allows for a government-sanctioned code of practice to replace the current self-regulatory standards that are drawn up by the industry itself.


Mr Gooding added: “The hard graft of creating a new code of practice for the industry is currently under way. This will go out for public consultation before being presented to Parliament.


“But the code is just one part of the new framework that needs to be put in place, including a single appeals body and independent scrutiny of the private parking trade associations and their members.”


The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said: “We are committed to cracking down on the minority of rogue parking operators who exploit motorists.


“That’s why we are working with the British Standards Institution on a Code of Practice for the industry that is fair to both drivers and operators. We expect to consult on this new Code later this year.”


The DVLA charges private firms £2.50 per record. The agency says its charges are set to recover the cost of providing the information and it does not make any money from the process.


This is how the volume of vehicle keeper records obtained by car parking management companies from the DVLA has changed over time.

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