Page last updated at 13:09 GMT, Thursday, 25 September 2008 14:09 UK

Court challenge for parking fines

Parking ticket
Campaigners argue that yellow line restrictions are not always explained

Millions of parking tickets could be invalidated if campaigners win the right to challenge parking laws.

Neil Herron, from Sunderland, wants the system that allows local councils to issue parking fines to be reviewed.

He said councils often invalidate their own controlled parking zones by including red lines inside them.

Mr Herron also argued at London's High Court that councils do not always erect signs required to tell drivers when they can park on yellow lines.

'Two-way street'

Mr Herron, from campaign group Parking Appeals, wants to use the strict letter of law to challenge parking enforcement.

"If you're a minute late back from a meeting you get a 120 fine. If you're an inch over a white bay, you get a 120 fine," he said outside court.

"The law's a two-way street and if we have to comply with the law, the most important thing is that the councils comply with the law."

He said controlled parking zones can only legally contain single yellow, double yellow or parking spaces.

Neil Herron
Mr Herron is also director of the Metric Martyrs campaign

Councils that include red lines within them invalidate the zone, Mr Herron said.

He also said outside controlled parking zones, signs are required to tell drivers when they can park on yellow lines, yet many streets have no signs.

Mr Herron's legal team also claims that the tribunals that deal with complaints about parking tickets for England and Wales are not independent because the councils issuing tickets have a say in the appointment of the adjudicators.

The Traffic Penalty Tribunal, which deals with complaints in England and Wales, and the Parking and Traffic Appeals Service, which deals with London complaints, declined to comment on the allegations.

The case was contested by Sunderland Council on behalf of all local authorities at High Court on Thursday.

The council said it would "not be appropriate" to comment at this stage.

Mr Herron is also director of Metric Martyrs, a group which campaigned against European Union plans to enforce traders to display only metric measurements.

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30 Jul 08 |  London

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