Father vows to fight Camden Council over faded road markings near Royal Free Hospital

PUBLISHED: 10:04 04 April 2013

Simon Worth stands by the loading bay markings. The car behind him is parked in the same spot where he stopped. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Simon Worth stands by the loading bay markings. The car behind him is parked in the same spot where he stopped. Picture: Nigel Sutton

© Nigel Sutton email

A father has vowed to “stand up” to Camden Council for giving him a parking fine as he visited his young daughter in hospital.

Simon Worth stopped in a loading bay in South End Road, Hampstead, on his way to visit his 11-year-old daughter who was recovering from a hip operation at the Royal Free Hospital in nearby Pond Street.

The 48-year-old, who works for a company producing health supplements, blames the fact that the “loading only” road markings had faded away while the nearest sign was 10 yards from his car.

Council officers admit the letters need repainting, but dismissed Mr Worth’s protests, insisting they have no legal obligation to maintain the markings.

Mr Worth said: “It’s about time someone stood up to them. I’ll go all the way to the courts if that’s what they want. I happened to be in this area because my daughter was in hospital for an operation.

Mr Worth, from Harlesden, parked in the section of the loading bay furthest from the lamppost sign detailing parking restrictions.

The bay is more than the length of two cars and while half of it is flanked by the words “loading only”, the words have completely disappeared from the space where he parked.

Mr Worth thought he was parked in a pay-and-display spot and put change into a nearby machine to purchase a ticket before rushing to see his daughter.

The Ham&High joined him at the scene on Tuesday to find that a motorist parked in the same space had been given a ticket alongside their pay-and-display ticket.

“The road markings are completely worn out and the nearest sign was about 30ft from my car so I didn’t stand much of a chance,” said Mr Worth. “Camden Council is the worst for this kind of thing.”

He is preparing a formal appeal against the ticket, which was issued on February 20.

A council spokesman said that the markings will be repainted, but insisted “there is no legal requirement for the words loading bay to be marked in a loading bay.

“However, to assist motorists we have previously marked this out in the location concerned in addition to clear signage of the restrictions in place. It is clear from the sign and markings in place that stopping in the bay is permitted for loading only from 9am until 8pm Monday to Friday. The penalty charge notice was issued as no loading was observed. It is the responsibility of motorists to check the restrictions in place before they leave their vehicle.”

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