Lockdown saw councils lose at least £40m in parking fines

Council incomes have been hit hard during lockdown, as new research suggests incomes from parking fines dropped by about 70 per cent during the period.

Data from some of the country’s largest councils found that overall losses were more than £40.1m.

A Freedom of Information request by LeaseFetcher.co.uk compared penalty charge notice (PCN) incomes between April and June in 18 of the largest UK cities and 23 London boroughs with the same time period last year.

In 2019, these councils made a cumulative total of almost £55.7m, but that was down to £16.5m in 2020.

When looking at the figures for the 18 cities excluding London, a cumulative total of £10.1m was raised in 2019, but this plummeted to just £1.7m in 2020, a drop of almost 83 per cent.

Leicester was the hardest hit city, losing 99.2 per cent of its PCN income, followed by Cardiff (98.6) and Leeds (95.1).

Private parking firms research
Private parking firms research

Of the 23 London boroughs that responded, £14.8m was raised during lockdown, a drop of 68 per cent on the £31.7m generated in 2019.

LeaseFetcher notes that much of this reduction was driven by councils removing PCN restrictions during lockdown. However, as the country slowly returns to normal, councils are beginning to reintroduce them, with PCN income creeping back to pre-lockdown levels.