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Blog - Council rakes in up to £400,000 in six months by fining parents on the school run

A council has raked in up to almost £400,000 in motoring fines in just six months by targeting parents on the school run.

The crackdown was the work of Croydon Borough Council, who closed off roads to those dropping children to and from three primary schools in the capital.

Officials claimed it was to manage congestion, but during the six-month scheme up to £380,120 worth of fines were handed out to parents.

The pilot project saw parents banned from driving through roads outside Heavers Farm Primary, St Chad’s and Woodcote Primary School in south east London.

A total of 2,924 penalty notice charges – at £130 each – were issued between October 2 last year and March 2 by Croydon Borough Council.

A Freedom of Information request showed that the council made a minimum of £190,060 and a maximum of £380,120 in motoring fines.

During the six month trial the roads were only closed to school-run parents and the council used automatic number plate recognition to ensure locals could use the roads.

Parents were given the chance to pay a discounted fine of £65 if they paid within 14 days.

Croydon Borough Council confirmed that as parents became used to the restrictions fewer fines were handed out.

A spokesman said: “The council piloted this scheme because inconsiderate school run driving had become a safety risk to children and a nuisance to residents.

“The primaries involved have since reported less congestion, a safer road for children to walk to school in and more punctuality, and over time the council has needed to issue fewer fines.”

Woodcote Primary in Coulsdon, south London, received the most fines with 1,392, Heavers Farm received 823 and St Chad’s 709.

The spokesman added: “Any surplus money from parking fines in Croydon is spent on funding the Freedom Pass, a travel scheme for the over-60s in London, and drivers who pay their fine within a fortnight are charged £65 instead of £130.

“The council’s traffic management advisory committee will decide later this year whether to make the schemes permanent.”