Murky Depths

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Greenwich borough

Greenwich Council parking revenue shows £1 million miss

New figures show Greenwich Council’s parking income will once again fall short of budget expectations to the tune of £1 million.

This figure is however an improvement on previous years. For nearly a decade now, income targets have been missed, with sums totalling £8.4 million since 2014/15.

From Cabinet report

In 2014/14 it was £2.1 million below budgeted numbers. In 2015/16 the budget miss was £2.06 million. Note the same cut and paste sentence stating: “The agreed parking strategy is being used as the basis for a number of initiative”:

A common site every year

Those initiatives did little. In 2016/17 it was a £2 million shortfall:

There was some improvement to a £1.4 million miss in 2017/18:

One key cause for change was external pressure. In particular London bus drivers threatened to stop calling at certain bus stops given endemic parking problems. Over 100 signed a petition stating they “are fed up with the councils inability and inaction to enforce this area”.

Plumstead station parking is notorious

The authority initially claimed they couldn’t find any suitable staff, though that position quickly changed with 10 additional staff hired earlier this year. Since then tackling chronic illegal parking has increased with a subsequent increase in revenue.

For many years before that, as budgets were continually missed, no additional staff were hired:

This failure to meet budgets has wide-reaching impacts. Greenwich Council are not allocating any parking income to improve streets and public spaces in contrast to many other London authorities. This is money being spent over the next three financial years:

No income dedicated from parking

Instead of using parking revenue the authority are using revenue funding to make up some of the shortfall – which impacts upon money for health, education and much else.

Abbey Wood estate – outsourced contract to enforce this area

Researching London authorities shows Greenwich lagging way behind most. Southwark, to give one example, are allocating £19.5 million over the next three years:

Here’s Lambeth with £15 million income from parking allocated towards streets and public space improvement:

Greenwich Council have also outsourced parking enforcement at housing estates to a private company. The contract sees the authority receive no income from fines.

That contract was renewed in 2018.

Parking problems still proliferate and just today I again received a message from a reader who has reported pavement parking numerous times in the same location. No action appears to be being taken.

6 Comments

  1. Jo

    This comes days after I read about the Plumstead Kinara centre being sold cheaply.

    Between Tory central Government cuts and a badly run local council who waste money like this what hope do the poorest have?

  2. Graham

    This private company responsible for parking enforcement in the Borough of Greenwich should not have their contract renewed. The wardens are clearly not carrying out their duties correctly and wasting thousands of thousands of pounds of council tax payers money on this companies contract.

    We also saw millions of pounds in losses to Greenwich Council off shoot company GPS which rang a lot of services on behalf of Greenwich Council.

    This two of the reasons why services to our most vulnerable people in Greenwich including children the elderly and disabled are being cut back. at time when they need more help and support than ever,

  3. Ashley

    The parking strategy in the Royal Borough is clearly inadequate and not fit for purpose. Surprising if you managed this process rigorously in the first place you wouldn’t have half the problems you see on the roads daily. A stronger presence is needed. If any other London Borough can do it why can’t Greenwich? Most of these council contracts out their parking services and receive significant revenues back to fund much required projects i.e. Public Realm improvements for starters.
    This authority need not squander funds on wasteful projects, this authority as no direction and need for a change in administration.

  4. D.W.W

    Pretty sure if there was a traffic warden sent to Lakedale Road in Plumstead there are so many illegally parked cars EVERY DAY they would make up some of the shortfall? There are quite often double parked motors at the bottom of Griffin Road?

  5. Graham

    Could not agree more Ashley.

    The current Administration on Greenwich Council waste millions upon millions of pounds of each year which could have funded front line services and reduced the amount of cuts the council has imposed on front line services which mainly affect very vulnerable people.in our society,

    The current administration need to go now. It really is time for change in Greenwich in every sense of the word. Those responsible for the millions of pounds loses should hang their head in shame and resign like anyone else should also have the decency to do in these circumstances.

    • Eltham High Street

      Totally agree that the current Council have lost direction in many aspects across the Borough. They have become complacent and think that people will just vote them in when elections come around. It’s time for a change; i suggest you read some of the brilliant articles on From The Murky Depths before you cast a vote

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