As Wokingham Borough slowly and carefully emerges from full lockdown, civil parking enforcement will gradually be re-introduced to keep roads safe and clear and to restore important income for services. Car parking charges at our country parks and town centres ensure better access for all residents, by preventing valuable car parking spaces from being used all day.
The council took the decision to suspend enforcement of car parking regulations, except in exceptional circumstances, when the lockdown began to protect those in difficult circumstances. As our borough attempts to open, with some children returning to school and more businesses up and running, it is time to return to full enforcement in a managed way.
From tomorrow (Saturday May 29) enforcement will start to take place at our country park car parks. However initially, and for a short period only, those who overstay or do not pay will receive warnings rather than penalty notices (fines).
On Monday June 1 soft enforcement will begin at all our car parks and, again, for a very limited period, enforcement will be via warnings rather than fines. But it will only be possible for a short period.
Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, executive member for transport and highways, said: “It was the right thing to suspend enforcement but it could only have been a temporary measure because enforcement of parking regulations is necessary to ensure roads are kept clear and safe.”
“There is a financial element to this: running services, such as car parks and country parks, costs money and dealing with Covid-19 has been incredibly expensive for the council. The financial support from the Government, while welcome, will not come close to covering what we are spending.”
“So, we have to reintroduce full enforcement. But we will do so in a measured way, with plenty of signage and publicity, and a soft enforcement initially so that nobody is caught unawares.”
Clear signage will be put up at car parks to make sure people are aware of parking charges and enforcement.