Councils CCTV switch-on, off to a shaky start

Today Westminster Council were able to switch-on around 120 CCTV cameras used to issue parking tickets, box junction fines and other motoring fines. The cameras have been undergoing a major upgrade, during which time the council claim to have lost around £6 million in revenue (view details here).

But the Council have come under criticism from the public and motoring campaigners who say the cameras are poorly signed and are mostly used to raise revenue from the motorist.

Indeed a short tour around the streets of Westminster today revealed CCTV cameras often placed very high up, with only a very small sign visible, signs which often compete with other information signs. We also came across many of the small CCTV signs on streets where no CCTV was in operation. Signs in neighbouring boroughs are approximately four times as large as the ones found in Westminster today.

When asked about this by the BBC, Cllr Chalkley said “All the camera locations are available on our website for anybody to inspect, and also the camera locations are clearly identified on the street with signage.

Westminster's CCTV website

Westminster's broken CCTV website

But when we visited the Councils website to learn of the locations only one of the 18 map links worked, the rest just displayed a restricted access message.

Chalkley not telling the truth again

Chalkley not telling the truth again

The Council strongly deny that the cameras are for raising revenue, but we question why Westminster CCTV signs are so small. But as the Council say they are not there to raise revenue why would the councils Chief Executive say “Non-availability of CCTV has contributed £6m to the in year deficit.“? Answers in an email to mmore@westminster.gov.uk please, this man needs your help?

Related story’s :

Evening Standard: 100 Extra CCTV

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10 Comments

Julian BondMarch 9th, 2010 at 8:49 am

Those photos appear to show a Wifi box under the CCTV. That suggests some serious hackery may be possible. Given that the CCTV has been installed using our money, the least they could do is to make them publicly accessible webcams. Then we could use them to help stop people stealing and damaging our motorcycles. Because wasn’t that one of the justfications for the M/C parking tax?

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DonaldMarch 9th, 2010 at 8:57 am

Westminster residents are aghast at the wholly awful way the current Councillors who manipulate the levers of power continue to act.

The blatant lies and untruths about the CCTV cameras is breathtaking! Revenue, and yet more revenue is the mantra of the Porter wannabee sycophantic wastrels on the current council. Four-eyed, vertically challenge Danny stood on his hinds legs on TV and yet again provided mirth to all. The jury is still out as to whether its his height or his stupidity that make s him so hilarious.

The elections are close and although Danny won’t be showing his short, miserable self again. We are just hoping that glutton Tombolis (is that a real name?) and finger puppet Burbridge have enough sense to stay away.

Westminster today mourns the loss of Common Sense which was preceded in death by his parents, Truth and Trust, his wife, Discretion, his daughter, Responsibility, and his son, Reason.
All victims of Westminster and their odious councillors.

BobbyMarch 9th, 2010 at 1:33 pm

These new CCTV cameras are bad news for everyone that uses the City of Westminster. Now they can be used to issuing parking tickets again, it means they won’t be used for crime prevention/detection purposes (which is what they were used for during the time they couldn’t be used to penalise people for parking offences).

The size of those CCTV warning signs is pathetic, how will motorists spot them when they are so tiny? They have obviously been made that small on purpose so drivers/riders won’t realise they are on CCTV, which will make Westminster City Council even more money.

Anyone got a long ladder?

CMCerMarch 9th, 2010 at 1:53 pm

Mr Pearson is right and speaking total common sense.

Had Chalkley, with his face only a mother could love, really wanted to ensure the free flow of traffic, maintain social order, ‘educate’ drivers rather than penalise them the surely the scheme would have been advertised to the hilt?

He is lying like he lies about everything. It will be interesting to see how these cameras reduce fines by one third as well as CEO’s being ‘lenient’ so I’d expect fines to be down by 50% say over last year? Can’t wait to find out what the tally is via FOI later in the year.

If income is reduced by a similar amount, does that mean residents will subsidise their lovely, shiny, happy streets?

BanditMarch 10th, 2010 at 4:42 pm

Tombolis…isn’t that an anagram of O’Slimbot? No, all right then…

As for Danny the Ratboy, only someone full of his own shit would be able to spout this one-line bollocks and expect anyone to believe it.

Gerry RMarch 11th, 2010 at 7:59 am

Tombolis is simply a toadying, odious creature who follows the whims and wherefores of his party.
Never mind his ward voters who voted in a mass against the introduction of the charge to PWT’s.
Disregard the residents associations who contacted him and were rewarded with supine support for Danny.

Frixos is a shambles who was previously thrown off the council for telling lies, yet re-instated only because no one was available that afternoon except him.

Barry Beelzeebub had a phrase for the type of Councillor Frixos is: A needy, nobody nothing. And fat!

Do something useful with your life and get to the gym – at least we won’t have to worry about the amount of kerbspace YOU take up!

You are but the god Ate personified!

Fuxos

MrCMarch 11th, 2010 at 9:25 am

If the cameras are designed to stop anti-social behavior why do they all seem to hang out over the road?

If they will bring down the number of tickets how will they be paid for, now that the revenue from tickets has been reduced?

If you live on a street like this how long before the cameras are hacked and turned on you, in your bedroom?

How are you supposed to find the cameras online when driving around Westminster, even if the web site shows them?

MrCMarch 11th, 2010 at 9:53 am

If you park up and come back to a ticket you will know what you where doing when you got the ticket the only reason for using cameras is to make it impossible for the motorist to remember what they where doing when they got the ticket.

Another FOI request will have to ask if more CCTV tickets are paid than those issued by wardens?

[...] Councils CCTV switch-on, off to a shaky start [...]

cctv camerasMarch 27th, 2013 at 10:30 am

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