8 February 2014

Cash parking meters - initial thoughts - please contribute

try vandalising this, smile for the camera
Yours views are being sought by the council about bringing back cash parking meters. Don't think of it as a u-turn but as the reaction of a listening council. PayByPhone has it's place, provide that for those that want to use it and cash meters for those who want to use cash; customer choice is key. This is the link to the council's information.

Here are the initial thoughts of Mr Mustard. What have I failed to mention? there must be something, please tell me what it is. Please also feel free to submit any of my thoughts in your own words to the council.

Reasons why cash parking meters are a good idea:

Cash is the quickest method of payment.

It is convenient (just keep a small bag of coins in your vehicle)

It is inclusive. It doesn't discriminate against the deaf or the elderly, those without bank accounts (1 to 2 million people in UK) those without credit cards and overseas visitors.

It will lead to an uptake in usage of car parks. I currently avoid all PayByPhone locations.

The increased takeup will lead to increased visits to our town centres which councils should be taking positive steps to support.

It gives proof of payment for the windscreen which drivers find comforting as they know the traffic warden can see it and it is quick and easy for the traffic warden to check.
The parking meters can be made vandal proof in a metal cage and put under cctv surveillance in order to reduce vandalism and theft. (see the meter in Carcassonne)
It is universally available to everybody.

It will enable PayPoint to be dispensed with. A slow method of payment even if you can find the nearest shop.

It will give residents & visitors greater choice as PayByPhone can be retained alongside it.

The meters could also be used to regulate free parking periods by giving out tickets to prove how long you have been parked free for (see what Harrow are doing with 20 minutes free across the borough.)

If the mobile phone network goes down a payment method is still available.

As the Transport Select Committee says cash options should be retained where there is a clear need (which there always is for some elderly people and the unbanked).


  1. I find it hard to believe they were ever withdrawn, but then Barnet seems to have been run extremely badly both by the officials and the councillors. One hopes things are improving !!

  2. Like you, I avoid the paybyphone locations and I shop far less, locally, as a result. Instead I go to out-of-county shopping malls with free or easy-to-pay parking. I don't object to paying for parking at all, as long as it doesn't give me a headache trying to make it work.

    I'm also hugely frustrated when people come to visit - we live in residential permit area in N12 and it's not worth using up a £5 visitor permit when a friend or family member is parking outside for a very short visit. But trying to use the phone to pay has failed every single time we've tried and we're left completely flummoxed.

    Thank you for representing us all to push for cash payment to be restored.

  3. Hi Kavey

    If you purchased vouchers at the £4 rate you can apply for a refund.


    New ones are £1 for all day.


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