Garage owners are taping over number plates to evade “mental” traffic wardens.
Car traders in Barnstaple have reported overzealous wardens who ‘creep up’ and ticket temporarily parked vehicles while they are being moved.
‘It’s a joke how many tickets we’re getting,’ said Melvyn Adams, who owns Gaydon Street Motors.
‘They’ve even ticketed cars which the AA have brought in overnight.’
The two local businesses – Gaydon Street Motors and ND Joy Autos – use double yellow lines, which restricts parking, outside their premises to move vehicles in and out.
‘We have a legal responsibility to enforce parking restrictions,’ said Stuart Hughes of Devon County Council, ‘double yellow lines in this area prohibit parking and in order to provide a fair and consistent service our civil enforcement team must be objective and enforce the restriction for all vehicles parked in this location.’
Owner of ND Joy Autos, Nigel Joy, says that previous traffic wardens would give the garages warnings before fining them.
‘I’ve been here 18 years and I’ve always had a good relationship with the council wardens,’ said Nigel Joy.
‘But now they wait and they clock the car and book you.
‘They don’t have the courtesy to give you a warning.’
The two business owners have said they have started taping over their number plates so that traffic wardens would be unable to read to registration, an offence that could carry with it a lb1,000 fine.
‘It’s unavoidable to park on the double yellow lines because you have to move the cars around,’ added Nigel Joy.
‘We don’t stop the flow of traffic,
‘We don’t take the mick.
‘Some of the wardens are mental – it’s victimisation.’
By Peter Jepson