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Somewhere over the Rainbow!!…..

May 11, 2010


Alderley Edge, England – Rainbow coalition, progressive coalition, confidence and supply agreement, a seedy deal round behind the bike sheds, whatever it’s a process. When the deals done on who governs Britain we will still have the same problems.

We will still be facing Greek style economic cuts, we will still be fighting a war, and we will still have mistrust in our politicians and system of democracy and of course biking will have the same issues. The actors may have changed but the play remains the same!

Let’s take motorcycling parking for instance. Why do some local authorities charge and others not? We have umpteen reams of policy guidance and guidelines on the advantages of motorcycle and scooter use but its left to the local authorities themselves to decide if motorcycle parking should be free.

Why?  Well there’s no overriding government policy that states parking must be free. The national motorcycle strategy is not a statutory guidance it’s just advice on good practice. There’s no cash, in the Local Government Finance Settlement, which central government pays over to local authorities to cover around 75% of local authorities’ costs, for motorcycle parking.

Result it’s a mess a good old British fudge. In fact if you are paying council tax in a local authority area and said authority is charging for motorcycle parking you are paying twice to park and subsidising cycling facilities that you may not be using. Strange there’s always cash for cycling!

So here’s a little idea for the rider’s rights group’s lobbyists and the industry ones too. Why not apply yourselves to turning the national motorcycle strategy into a statutory guidance then we won’t have to fight authority by authority for free parking. Simple really.

Meantime the fight for free bike motorcycle and scooter parking in the City of Westminster, London reaches the High Court on June 24. The ‘No To Bike Parking Tax’ (NTBPT) campaign are warning that failure to halt the Westminster charging scheme will result in the end of free motorcycle parking across the UK as local authorities seek funding streams.  UK campaign group The TaxPayers Alliance have calculated that annually the UK’s motorcycling community could put as much as £93,000,000 into local authority coffers via parking charges.

NTBPF is calling on UK bikers to support its legal challenge fighting-fund. Currently £20,000 short of the expected minimum legal costs of £50,000. See how to donate here….

No preaching, but don’t be wise after the event on this one. If you don’t like what THEY are doing to biking then do something, anything about it.

© Back Roads Rider 2010

3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 11, 2010 11:13 pm

    An annual permit to park in crowded, insecure parking bays in Westminster costs £100. That’s at the ‘introductory rate’, God knows what they’ll raise it to in 2013 when they’re allowed to bump it up… £300 ? £500 ?

    Seems logical to me for a commuter to make a one-time investment of just £50 in a bid to end that expense – permanently.


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