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Surbiton Crescent: drivers get wise to 'no entry' sign

Widely criticised traffic restrictions that made £4.5 million for Kingston Council the first year they were brought in have caught out far fewer drivers during their second 12 months of existence.

Nearly 70,000 fines were sent out to drivers using Surbiton Crescent between November 14, 2016 and November 13, 2017, after the council put up no entry signs for cars.

Each motorist has to pay £65 minimum for driving down the road if they pay it within four weeks. £4,473,300 is the estimated minimum revenue the council could have collected from this period’s fines. But a Freedom of Information request has revealed that from November 14, 2017 to November 13, 2018, just 50 fines were issued.

Part of the council’s £30 million Go Cycle “mini-Holland” scheme, the Traffic Management Order was first put in place on a trial basis, but was made permanent in June 2017. The move was plagued with controversy, with many motorists insisting the signage was unclear, and therefore the fines were unfair. While in opposition, Kingston’s Liberal Democrat councillors argued for the fines to be repaid – at least for the first offences. But in July, two months after their landslide local election win, they said they could not pay them back because the previous administration had spent the money.

Go Cycle is a project paid for by the Greater London Authority, hoped to encourage cycling across the borough. Although residents have reported seeing few people using the current Go Cycle routes, usage is expected to build momentum after all other routes are complete.

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