Fury as councils earn almost £1bn in parking charges – find out if your area is the worst hit | The Sun

COUNCILS earned almost £1 billion from parking charges in just one year, new official figures have revealed.

The latest data from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities shows that local authorities have made huge profits from the pockets of motorists.

Critics say that authorities have turned drivers into a "huge cash cow" as they raked in a collective £962.3 million in the financial year 2022/23.

London made up the largest proportion of the pot, with the capital's multiple councils collectively making £551.3 million.

The overall income has risen from £936.1 million in 2018/19, the last financial year not affected by pandemic restrictions.

Head of roads policy at the AA, Jack Cousens, said: "Once again official statistics show that councils have turned parking into a huge cash cow, not just a service to stimulate local trade and support workers and visitors.



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"While the Covid fallout, such as people working from home, and the economic downturn are factors in the decline, hikes in parking charges by councils have contributed and helped to drive more shoppers online.

"In effect, many local authorities are killing the goose that lays the golden egg."

There are also fears that the figure will tip over £1 billion this year after a number of councils increased charges by double digits in April.

Dudley Council in the West Midlands hiked the price of an all-day ticket by 43% to £5, while Bristol City Council doubled prices at select car parks.

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And tourist hotspot Cornwall has increased prices by almost a third in popular destinations.

Ian Taylor, a director at the Alliance of British Drivers, slammed councils for topping up their accounts off the backs of Brits.

He said: "Once again we have proof in front of us that councils are looking to the driver as a cash top-up to add to their revenue stream.

"This is something we have been attempting to fight tooth and nail for years.

"It is an easy source of revenue for councils and it’s like plucking the low fruit from the tree."

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