Lynne Featherstone, the Home Office minister, will announce plans to curb the activities of clampers in England and Wales.Now, there’s no doubt that unlicensed car-clampers and unscrupulous landowners have brought the practice into disrepute. The local papers are no stranger to complaints from aggrieved motorists genuinely (and sometimes, not so genuinely!) held to ransom by clampers.
Ms Featherstone will say the rules should be brought into line with those in Scotland, where clamping on private land was banned after a judge said it amounted to 'extortion' and 'theft'.
Longrider relates a few personal experiences.
But then, if the problem is cowboy clampers and lack of regulation, as Subrosa points out from the Scottish experience, why not regulate them? Why leave the private landowner with no redress from the ‘I’ll park anywhere I like’ brigade?
Where it’s possible to, or practical to, yes, I suppose they could.
Ms Featherstone said she wanted to encourage "more proportionate way to deal with parking transactions".
Landowners who wanted to protect their land could erect barriers, she said.
But that wouldn’t help the car park owner shown on Monday’s ‘One Show’ spot about this; there, a car had parked alongside several parking bays (blocking them). On being ticketed and clamped, the driver had simply removed his personal possessions and abandoned the car! Is someone like that going to respect any other form of enforcement?
Patrick Troy, chief executive of the British Parking Association, said that the Government would have to explain to private landowners how the ban would work.
He said: "If clamping is banned the Government must describe how it would protect landowners' interests where vehicles are parked unlawfully on their land."
Once again, legislation is being made on the basis of the few rogues, and hitting the mainly compliant and useful services.
After all, in a world that contains people who can do this…
A taxi driver was arrested after he got behind the wheel of an ambulance answering an emergency call and moved it to make way for his own vehicle.I thought I’d seen everything, but no:
Officers attended the incident after the ambulance crew reported their vehicle had been driven away from outside an address in Pevensey Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, as they were preparing to take a one-month-old baby to hospital yesterday.Respect for others property rights is a noble idea, but the balance cannot swing too far the other way; without enforcement and penalties to rein in the likes of these people, we have anarchy…