What a lovely scene on the Ridgeway in Mill Hill with its chocolate box cottages. Sadly though the chocolate you get might turn out to be more unpalatable than one of Bertie Bott's Any Flavour beans and you may well leave this location with a nasty taste in the mouth. Why?
The reason is that despite most of The Ridgeway, NW7 being completely unrestricted there is an almost invisible CPZ zone. It extends to two short bays, the one outside this short row of cottages and another outside of the building to the left of picture (it would be one bay but for the dropped kerb).
Normally you would expect to see a pair of CPZ entry signs at each end of the zone but that would mean four large intrusive signs being placed on 50m of road in this delightful setting and they are optional as single yellow lines can be locally signed instead (it is only single yellow lines that a CPZ sign controls if you recall) A CPZ can be just these two bays and the restrictions are communicated by bay sign alone, like this (the yellow sign applies only to lorries weighing more than 5 tonnes and buses/coaches and stops them parking from 6.30pm to 8am)
|are you scratching your head?|
Mr Mustard has just had a PCN cancelled at this location due to a technical error which he found most amusing. The Notice to Owner was sent to Mr Mustard in respect of his client's car, in the name of Mr Mustard (in his real name that is) and of course Mr Mustard had never owned the car so he defended on that basis. What was also amusing was that the lady car owner got her PCN when she was dancing the tango at a local village hall (if you fancy learning there are lessons every Wednesday from 8.30 to 10.30pm - see this link. The first move that the teachers, Ann & David have to show you, is to move your car so you don't get a PCN) but it was NSL who put a foot wrong. Mr Mustard decided to let the parking manager know about yet another blunder by NSL and now the PCN has been cancelled and an apology has been received.
Mr Mustard wonders who lives, or used to live, at this location as to give them a CPZ to limit parking when there is loads of space, looks to be over-generous and unnecessary. You might think that the chances of getting a PCN in this remote spot are slim at 8.30 of an evening but that overlooks two points
1 - traffic wardens are roaming the borough in cars & on scooters looking for victims until 11 at night, and
2 - a resident of one of these cottages phones the council and asks for enforcement if you park there when you shouldn't (the road needs to be renamed The Snitchway?)
Why do people get caught at this location? It is because the sign is not set out in a logical manner. It should be like this:
Resident permit holders only
Mon - Fri
8 - 9.30 am
2.45 - 4.15 pm
6.30 - 8.45 pm
Sat - Sun
10 am - 4 pm
6.30 - 8.45 pm
and then fewer people would go wrong.
Mr Mustard quite fancies challenging a PCN for this location all the way to the end of the process and seeing what happens, so if you have one, do send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Some good did come out of the cancelled PCN. A £60 donation was made to the North London Hospice in thanks for the help of Mr Mustard.
Why does this zone exist at all as it really shouldn't. The weekday times seen designed to limit the possibilities for school dropping off, the afternoon ones for pickup and the evening ones are targeted at users of the church hall. The weekend times are just aimed at church hall users. It seems a completely petty zone to Mr Mustard. If you live there though, and church hall parkers are ruining your life, do please comment.
All clear now?