The Evening Standard have published a puzzling article which quotes figures released by Labour, claiming that Tory-run councils are making more money from parking charges and fines, than Labour-run ones. The most expensive council for example, was shown as Westminster, which makes approx. £637.41 per household in parking revenue. The highest Labour-run council (of 20 who released their figures) was shown to be Newham at £167.01. Hilary Benn was quoted as saying:
“This survey shows that Tory councils are imposing much higher charges when families up and down the country are seeing their incomes squeezed,” he said.
“We also know that if parking charges are too high, people won’t visit their high street and small businesses will lose out on much-needed trade.”
As the article does point out however, Westminster covers the West End of London, and Kensington is next-highest, both of which have huge numbers of tourists and visitors (Westminster has over 1 million per day) which skew the results quite drastically. As anyone who has walked along Oxford Street can see, nobody appears to be put off visiting the area by the higher parking charges.