Figures suggest Berwick is being singled out by traffic wardens

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The Conservatives say they would abolish ‘unfair’ parking fines across the county after new figures revealed that more money is being raised from Berwick than anywhere else in Northumberland.

Figures released by Northumberland County Council this week show that between April and August a total of £48,576 was raised in parking fines from the town, which is more than anywhere else in the county.

Between April and August, Berwick was the subject of 2022 hours of traffic warden scrutiny, more than Morpeth and Alnwick combined. The figures are to be reviewed by a policy scrutiny meeting taking place at County Hall in Morpeth on Tuesday.

Church street resident Tom Forrester, the Conservative County Council candidate for Berwick North, said: “These figures prove that the new traffic wardens are unfairly targeting Berwick residents for profit. The wardens are going where they think there is money to be made, which is why Berwick gets more attention from them than Alnwick and Morpeth combined.

“Parking regulations are being used for revenue generation rather than as a means of managing traffic. The council needs to explain why Berwick residents are being targeted in this way and local people should ask this question of their local Lib Dem councillors when they seem them in the street.”

Councillor Peter Jackson, leader of Northumberland Conservatives, said: “Berwick residents already pay more than £1 million in parking charges each year, which is more than anywhere else in the county. The money taken in parking fines is a further tax on residents and further proof that Berwick is being used as a cash cow by the council, which continues to provide free parking in Blyth and Ashington. A Conservative run council would end this unfairness by abolishing parking charges in Berwick and across Northumberland.”

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INCOME RECEIVED

(April to August 2012)

Berwick £48,576

Hexham £38,080

Morpeth £34,410

Blyth £25,330

Alnwick £17,710

Ashington £17,285

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WARDEN VISIT HOURS

(April to August 2012)

Hexham 2,099.94

Berwick 2,022.05

Morpeth 956.85

Blyth 912.82

Ashington 696.93

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TOTAL FINES ISSUED

(April to August 2012)

Berwick 2,081

Hexham 1,614

Morpeth 1,579

Blyth 1,027

Alnwick 849