13 February 2022

Benefits from cycling in Barnet next Saturday 19 February 2022


Get your bike out next Saturday and go for a lovely ride up, or down, or both in the cycle lane on the A1000

19th Feb 2022 - A1000 Cycle Lane Cycling Offers

The following businesses along the A1000 Cycle Lane are showing their support of cycling and cyclists by offering discounts on the 19th February.

Phoenix Cinema. 52 High Road London N2 9PJ

£2 off cinema tickets and 15% discount on food and drink.

Café with cake selection. Bike parking outside.


Bald Faced Stag. Pub. 69 High Rd London N2 8AB

20% discount on food and drink for those cycling.

Bike parking in car park at rear.

Turn up, or book online www.thebaldfacedstagn2.co.uk / 020 8442 1201

The Old White Lion. Pub. 121 Great North Road N2 0NW

20% discount on food.

Preferrably book in advance.

theoldwhitelionfinchley.co.uk / 0208 883 6459

The Cherry Tree café

Sharon is offering 15% off coffee and sandwiches.

The Cherry Tree Cafe, Cherry Tree Woods, Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QH 

(access opposite East Finchley tube station).


Coffee Bank

85 High Rd 

East Finchley

N2 8AE

On the left heading north A1000


Serving drinks and food. Includes Cake!

Thank you Sandra.

Offering a 15% discount to cyclists on the 19th February.

Please remember these discounts are at the discretion and goodwill of the businesses.

Other venues to follow.

7 February 2022

Bexley Council - fettered discretion


The above tribunal case, one of seven that afternoon, didn't require Mr Mustard to say much to the adjudicator other than 'thank you' as he had done the spade work, argued the case consistently and placed a skeleton argument on file to boil the case down for the adjudicator to what was disputed.

It isn't only awful that Bexley Council has a policy of refusing representations if the blue badge holder isn't the driver given that the nature of some disabilities would hamper the safe driving of some (so you want them to be the passenger for the good of the community) but that having placed a bay outside the house of Mrs Sehmi for her convenience the council wanted to part her from £110 when she was suffering post operative pain following a major operation. 

It is morally repugnant of any council to enforce a PCN in such circumstances. A policy change is desperately needed. PCNs have got to stop being used as a vehicle for revenue raising.


6 February 2022

Come on Barnet Council - give the money back - you are legally and morally in the wrong

Mr Mustard noticed an unusual statutory notice in the local paper, here it is:

Mr Mustard hadn't been asked to fight a PCN at any of these locations and therefore he hadn't noticed the omission error in the map based traffic order. Mr Mustard concluded that any PCN issued there would be ultra vires i.e. beyond the powers of the council to issue it.

To be sure, in March 21, he emailed the boss of parking at Barnet Council to ask pertinent questions

Usually Mr Mustard gets an email back within 24 hours, even outside the usual working week. This time his email was met with a resounding silence. Mr Mustard knew he was on to something. Mr Mustard then sent, in August 21 (he was busy doing nothing during the summer) a request to Parking Consultations. Again he was busy and it wasn't until December that he noticed the lack of response and had to nudge the department. They registered his request as a Freedom of Information request with a request date of 8 December. That is how you fiddle your FOI statistics, the request was made on 17 August. For some reason there was delay in responding (this was the simplest of requests, get a document out of the electronic filing cabinet and send it to the requestor, Hackney can do that in 10 minutes) for which FOI apologised and said Mr Mustard should have the documents by 25 January. They arrived on 27 January.

Mr Mustard went back to the original 2012 Traffic Order which led to signs being erected about the Event Day zone. He couldn't find a complete copy Traffic Order but did see that Barford Close was listed as being eligible for permits and thus was clearly part of the Order and signs were erected to reflect the rules. Back in 2012 every section of road had the rules described based on written descriptions, like this one

In 2014 the council decided to move over to a mostly map based Traffic Order (there were still a lot of words). The statement of reasons included this gem, 'without change', which Mr Mustard knew was nonsense as some of the boilerplate was different and various forms of words used over the years were simultaneously brought up to date.

Mr Mustard worked out over time that the way in which all the dozens of Traffic Orders were consolidated didn't involve anyone reading them and plotting them on a map. No, it involved people with gps trackers walking the streets of Barnet pressing buttons at the start and ends of bays or lines and recording the data on all signs they saw, whether or not they were correctly installed. What must have happened in the case of these now added roads is that either the foot soldiers forgot to walk down them or the data fell off the computer somewhere and when the map was checked before publication the omissions were not noticed (not a surprise in a place as big as Barnet).

You can see the differences here. 



Here is the relevant section of the CPZ map produced in 2012 when the Saracens zone was first mooted. 

For your reference, here is the amending (correcting) Traffic Order.

Traffic Management Order - Barnet Council - fixing omissions 2021 by MisterMustard on Scribd

Then Mr Mustard went to look at tribunal cases for the omitted event day locations since December 2014 when the maps became law. There were only 3 cases all of which the motorist won without the maps needing to be carefully consulted.

Finally Mr Mustard's research took him to the April 2015 to March 2021 database of issued PCNs. He extracted all of them (codes 01,16 and 19) for Wheatley Close, Barford Close, Westside and Hall Lane. Here they are.

Barnet Council ultra vires PCNs in the Event Day Zone by MisterMustard on Scribd

So that is 864 PCNs, all but 15 of them issued at £110. The usual rule of thumb is that half of them will be paid at 50% and then enough at 100% or even 150% to counterbalance the ones which aren't paid and lead to an overall income level of c.50% of the face value.

864 * £110 * 50% =  £45,720 of illegal income.

Mr Mustard would have heard if the council had made plans to automatically refund the PCNs as would be the proper course of action. Consider also that some will have been sent to bailiffs and the warrant cannot be valid if the underlying PCN isn't legal.

If you are affected (you can check with Mr Mustard if you are unsure, email mrmustard@zoho.com) Mr Mustard recommends you make a complaint.

You can do this by telephoning 020 8359 2000 although Mr Mustard doesn't suggest this method as you don't have a written record, by writing to: Corporate Complaints, Barnet Council, 2 Bristol Avenue, London, NW9 4EW or, using Mr Mustard's preferred method, by sending an email to barnet@nsl.co.uk

If you no longer have the details of any PCN that you paid for, give the council the name and address of the registered keeper and the vehicle registration and ask to be refunded for any PCN in the streets listed at the very top of the blog issued to the vehicle registration number which you will provide them with.

Please add a comment if you get a refund. If you do, please also consider donating part of it to the North London Hospice.


2 February 2022

Hackney Council FOI - 'Sorry' not in their vocabulary


Mount Pleasant Lane

Before we get to the purpose of the blog Mr Mustard just wants to say that if you drive through this gap you are an ignorant or an incompetent driver, you choose (why?, 6 signs, 6!). Remember Mr Mustard's mantra, 'planter = penalty' (probably). Still unsure? google 'flying motorbike sign'.

So here are the two responses received to a Freedom of Information (FOI) request. The first one was patently wrong, there being no ambiguity in Mr Mustard's eyes.

If Hackney Council were unsure what was required they should have asked for clarification. Mr Mustard would have respected the council if they had simply said, 'sorry, we misunderstood what you wanted and here are the new figures' but instead they blame Mr Mustard for asking ambiguous questions, that is an unedifying approach.

It is very concerning that 1 in 8 PCNs have reached a bailiff. Part of the reason for this is the disaster which was DVLA in the early stages of the pandemic when they didn't have on line systems for updating the address at which a vehicle is kept.

On the positive side Hackney Council were more than fair in sending out zero value warning notices for 3 months which gave the people for whom this was a regular route the opportunity to chance their habits for free. Thereby Hackney achieved their objective of changing traffic flow without soaking the motorist in the process.


Not quite the end as there is another story coming about this location, although Mr Mustard might let the newspapers have it.