Drivers commuting to one part of the UK have decided to take a £65 hit rather than brave local parking.
Parking charges in one part of London have surged to unbearable highs for local tradesmen, who claim they pay between £2.50 and £6.35 per hour to leave their cars in the city.
As if this wasn’t enough, those who drive diesel-powered vehicles must pay an additional £6.50 surcharge in Islington, leaving them shouldering a per-hour fee of up to £12.85.
For a five-hour stay in the northern borough, they are left with an eye-watering £64.25 bill.
The sky-high costs have forced some workers to look for their salvation in Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) that, in some cases, could cost them up to £25 less.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, London plumber Plumber Tony Lockhart said local per-hour prices are waging a “war on motorists”, and that tickets are “cheaper than paying per hour”.
Islington, where local politicians introduced the diesel surcharge in 2019, prices PCNs at between £80 to £130, but will reduce the fines by half if they are paid in two weeks.
The policy means drivers who refuse to cough up for their diesel-guzzling cars pay between £40 and £65, roughly the price of a five-hour parking stint.
The price difference is potentially so significant that, in some cases, firms are now telling drivers they should opt for the PCN instead of paying for legitimate parking.
Data released by Islington in October suggests people may be following that advice, as the council has issued more than 100,000 notices between 2022 and 2023.
Parking officials issued 101,389 higher rate notices in the 2022/2023 season, an increase of 2,995 compared to 2021/2022.
The notices brought the council more than £18 million of revenue during the period, and people reliant on their cars working in Islington have said the surcharge is a “war on motorists”.
Mr Lockhart said: “It just can’t go on. This is a war on motorists – but it goes further than that. It’s class warfare. They simply don’t want working-class people like me in London.”
Another tradesman, 43-year-old Michael Ovppong, said his boss occasionally “authorises” a parking fine for him while he is out on the job.
He added: “These extra taxes on motorists, it’s making it impossible for people like me to do my job.”
Express.co.uk has approached Islington Council for comment.