Westminster Council blow £100,000 on extra double yellow lines in spiteful revenge against campaigners
Two days before Christmas Westminster City Council announced it was to introduce extra double yellow lines across the West End. This was seen by many campaigners’ as spiteful revenge after the Council was forced by the High Courts to postpone the introduction of the revenue raising and much hated Sunday and weekday evening ‘nightlife tax’ on parking.
The council attempted to play down the extent of it’s planned double yellow line painting spree by hiding behind disabled groups and putting out fake figures of the number of parking spaces which would be lost in the West End.
Then in February this year the Evening Standard reported that some of the high profile campaigners’ who had fought against the council, had noticed an alarming amount of double yellow lines appearing around the restaurants and clubs they operated.
Were the campaigners right, was the council embarked on a nasty game of payback? The council had produced three PDF maps with the proposed new stretches of double yellow lines marked on in red. These maps had formed part of the little known consultation period leading up to the decision.
In the photo below we show the end of Riding House Street as it runs along the side of All Souls Church which stands in front of the BBCs Broadcasting House. As you see a nice single yellow line allowing cars and motorcycles to park off peak for free as they have done for years.
Next we show you a close up of from one of the maps used by the council for its consultation and which is supposed to indicate what’s not changing as much as what is.
We’ve added the little peg man to show you which way our photographer is facing, the thick red line is where the double yellow lines are meant to go..
Our last photo was taken this month, the council have indeed gone mad with painting double yellow lines, losing at least four car parking spaces, and no hint on the councils consultation map that double yellow lines were to be painted where they have been. Oh look, not a dropped kerb in sight, that’s payback for you!
It doesn’t help Westminster residents or visitors that the Conservative Cabinet member for spin, illusion, misdirection and all other parking related headaches Cllr Lee Rowley seems to have no head for figures let alone know how to read a simple map as he has spent £209,000 writing off his failed parking policy (as again reported in the Evening Standard) after having to scrap most of the signs he pre-ordered before even making a decision on the nightlife parking tax. We now learn that the cost of blitzing the West End with yellow paint has robbed the taxpayer of a further £101,950.
The new double yellow line costs comprise;
The estimated cost of putting down the yellow lines in the West End (Zones E and G and Sub-Zones F3 and F6) was approximately £23,600
WestOne was paid approximately £31,550 to draft the delegated authority reports to initiate the public consultation, consider the responses received and make the traffic regulation order;
WestOne was paid approximately £31,100 to undertake site visits, prepare and modify plans illustrating the proposals and setting out the limits of the double yellow lines on site, ready for the lining gangs to lay the double yellow lines.
The City Council incurred other costs such as staff time and paying for postage and advertising that totalled approximately £15,700.
Rolwey refuses to apologise for his cock-ups and desperately clings on to his Cabinet position claiming the extra cash he gets in allowances for being at the head table, no matter how lacking in ability he is in being able to actually do the job he’s supposed to be doing.
What a man.
One wonders if those disabled groups would have been so quick to back the council’s double yellow line policy if they’d known the true human and financial costs. As this month the NHS-run Adult Social Care Survey (ASCS), which collates information from people receiving social care, rated Westminster joint worst in London. Also this week local pensioners are up in arms as Westminster Council are taking away their Taxicards seeing one man with Parkinsons now spending £40 just to get to hospital.
We repeat, what a man you are Lee Rowley!
Church Street resident Ash Naghouni, 42, who has been in a wheelchair for almost 20 years, says he has noticed a decline in his social care and told the local press: “The attitude before last year was how the council could help you to become more independent and contribute to society. Since last year it’s been as if I’m not important any more. All they are talking about is ways to cut down my care package to see how much money they can save.”
Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour Group, said;
“Westminster Council’s priorities are back to front, with painting double yellow lines in the West End seemingly having more importance than the welfare of Westminster’s most vulnerable residents. With a new Leader due to be elected this week it is high time that the Council concentrated on serving residents better than its current hard-hearted approach to those most in need.”
As some of you know Nutsville was enjoying some time off, we really should not have to come back and point out to the council their slimy incompetent ways, hopefully this is a one off.
Westminster Council please get someone in charge who knows what they are doing for everyone’s sake, and cut loose some of your over paid senior officers who really haven’t got a clue how to do their jobs, it’s ridiculous.