Hackney banks £14m as London boroughs profit from parking fees

Parking meter Pic: R4vi

Hackney made a £14m profit on parking charges last year, the 9th highest in England, according to a new report.

The report by the RAC Foundation showed that English councils made a total profit of £819m from parking operations from 2016 to 2017, with London’s councils topping the list of the highest revenues.

The report shows that Hackney ranked 9th, Tower Hamlets 18th, Croydon 27th and Lewisham 38th. The £819m figure is 10% higher than last year and 40% higher than four years ago. See the full list here.

Total revenue from parking operations per Council from 2016 to 2017 Graph: Camille Mijola

The profits of Croydon Council’s parking operation increased by almost 40 per cent last year, while Westminster – the council with the highest parking revenue in the UK – saw its profits increase by 31 per cent.

Hackney and Lewisham’s profits increased by 10 per cent, in line with the English average, while Tower Hamlets’ remained stable.

Croydon Council was approached by Eastlondonlines for comment but provided no response.

Increase in revenue per Council from 2016 to 2017 Graph: Camille Mijola


The surplus figure or profit is calculated by taking income from all parking charges, including penalty notices and then deducting running costs. The total income of English Councils was £1.582 billion – up 6 per cent year-on-year. This means that 52 per cent of all income from parking operations in England resulted in profit for Councils.

Although the total income comes from a sum of all parking charges, the profit is generated from parking fines, whether from motorists failing to buy the correct ticket or parking in unauthorised bays.

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “The silver lining for drivers is that these surpluses must almost exclusively be ploughed back into transport and as any motorist will tell you, there is no shortage of work to be done.

“We urge motorists to take the time to read their own local authority’s parking report so they can see both the rationale for charges in their area and how the surplus is being spent.”

Hackney councillor Feryal Demirci, cabinet member for Neighbourhoods, Transport and Parks, told East London Lines: “We can’t increase the supply of parking, so need to control demand – parking charges are our tool for doing that. The use of any surplus is strictly governed by legislation – we use it on transport related schemes including concessionary fares for older people and residents with disabilities as well as works to the public realm to improve conditions for walking and cycling.”

The figures were published one day before London Mayor Sadiq Khan submitted a draft plan setting out housing and transport priorities for the next 25 years. He proposed a ban on parking spaces in new homes and office blocks to cut car use in the city.

Demirci said: “Most journeys in inner London can be easily walked, cycled or made by public transport, and through the revenue earned by parking charges we can make more improvements to help people give up their cars and choose more sustainable modes of transport.”


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