For anyone working in the commercial district and commuting by car the problem of parking is quite significant. On street parking is almost non existent and where it is possible it is only for short periods. There are a couple of multi stories within walking distance but for a typical hard-pressed motorist the £10.50 per day charges are beyond the reach of many.
The commercial district lies on the northern border of the city centre, just a little further north is largely former industrial land some of the streets are quiet throughout the day and there are no parking charges, it is about 10 minutes walk from the city. It is no surprise then that these roads are chock-a-block with parked cars every working day, for ten minutes walk each way a commuter can save £2,500 per year.
Generally I pass this area before the cars arrive and return after they have left but today I was finishing at lunch time and as I went past I particularly noticed the following street, Oil St.
What struck me most about it was the number of cars parked on the pavement because just a couple of weeks ago a friend quoted an ancient piece of law to me
The Highways Act 1835, Section 72
“If any person shall wilfully ride upon any footpath or causeway by the side of any road made or set apart for the use or accommodation of foot passengers; or shall wilfully lead or drive any horse, ass, sheep, mule, swine, or cattle or carriage of any description, or any truck or sledge, upon any such footpath or causeway; or shall tether any horse, ass, mule, swine, or cattle, on any highway, so as to suffer or permit the tethered animal to be thereon.”
This is the only section of the act still in force and it is interesting because in modern terms it is used to enforce the prevention of two offences.
- Parking on the pavement
- Cycling on the pavement
I wonder how many of these people like to moan about pavement cycling?
If it inconvenienced them, or they were ‘nearly run down’, I’d wager quite a lot of them. But I would also guess that they don’t think twice about parking here every day. They probably don’t think twice about cyclists having to dive out of the way of oncoming cars, or the drivers who can barely get past them. I’d guess though that the owner of the car whose wing mirror I saw get smashed will be furious and blame the other driver, despite the fact that their inconsiderate parking led directly to the incident.
On the other hand, Liverpool City Council are really missing out on some revenue. These roads are full every day, send out the traffic wardens or set up some parking meters are there’s a whole new revenue stream. If they do that, they might even encourage a few of these people to start cycling. After all, we already know that they are willing to do a bit or exercise to minimise their travel costs, with a bit more encouragement they might give up driving to work altogether.