Drivers issued urgent warning against 'taking risks' with expensive parking fines on the rise

A parking warden issuing fines

The number of parking fines issued is increasing year-on-year

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 05/07/2024

- 09:53

Drivers in Scotland and Northern Ireland escaped parking fines at a greater rate than in England and Wales

Drivers are increasingly at risk of expensive parking fines as new data shows that almost four million tickets were issued in 2023 alone.

The research found that the number of penalty charge notices is growing year-on-year, with Londoners likely to see the highest amount of fines handed out.

Data from the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA) shows that it earned £24.25million from penalty charge notices between April and December 2023.

This represents an 84 per cent increase compared to 2020, although these results would have naturally been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and national lockdowns.

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Parking tickets

Drivers in Westminster faced 383,983 parking fines between April and December last year


Through a Freedom of Information request, GoShorty found that drivers in Westminster were the most likely to be slapped with a parking fine, as almost 384,000 tickets were issued.

This was closely followed by Lambeth with 369,519 in second, followed by a large drop-off with Manchester seeing 252,000 fines issued for parking infringements.

Drivers in other parts of London were dismayed to see fines handed out with Tower Hamlets, Richmond and Wandsworth and Kingston Upon Thames making the top 10 list for the most penalty charge notices issued.

The data found that drivers in Scotland and Northern Ireland were more careful when parking with no local authorities appearing in the top 10 list.

Andy Moody, founder and managing director of GoShorty, commented on the rise in parking fines, suggesting that the growing number of parking fines was directly correlated with the record number of licence holders across the UK.

He also highlighted how traffic levels were higher in 2023 than in 2022 as congestion returns to pre-pandemic rates, with Moody saying there was less room for parking with roads busier than ever.

The expert continued, saying: "Drivers are taking more risks due to the lack of parking real estate, resulting in an increasing amount of PCNs issued.

"Although it’s frustrating, drivers shouldn’t take any risks with PCNs. Double-check nearby signs or road markings, make sure pay-and-display tickets are visible and don’t risk leaving your vehicle anywhere you can get a fine, even if it’s just for a few minutes."

The top 10 UK councils with the most PCNs issued in 2023

1. Westminster - 383,983

2. Lambeth - 369,519

3. Manchester - 252,176

4. Brighton and Hove - 160,162

5. Tower Hamlets - 105,636

6. Richmond and Wandsworth - 101,090

7. Cardiff - 90,149

8. Bournemouth - 86,483

9. Medway - 81,134

10. Kingston upon Thames - 81,134


Motorists in the capital should avoid parking on the pavement or risk facing fines

Motorists in the capital are more likely to be hit with a parking fine


Moody suggested the increased use of car sharing as an alternative to being hit with expensive parking fines, with fewer cars on the road meaning less traffic and more legal parking spaces.

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