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More tickets issued on Lisburn Road than anywhere else in North

Fine time for parking wardens

By Paul Ainsworth

TRADERS on the Lisburn Road have accused traffic wardens of treating the area as a “soft target” for issuing fines, after it was revealed the area has the highest rate for tickets in the North.

Details revealed by the Department for Regional Development, who employ the National Car Park “redcoats”, show that in 2001, a total of 2,296 tickets were issued to vehicles parked along the South Belfast thoroughfare, an average of almost 50 per week.

Of all parking tickets issued across the North for vehicles found in an urban clearway, 27 per cent were on the Lisburn Road.

Local trader Mark Taylor slammed the findings, and warned the huge number of tickets issued was working against the attempts to bring new visitors to the road. He also accused the DRD of treating the area differently to other major Belfast routes.

“I’m not surprised to hear you have more chance getting a parking ticket here than anywhere else,” he told the South Belfast News.

“Wardens are a common sight strolling up and down the road, and they know the place is a soft target. The fact is you just would not have the same number walking up and down the Falls or the Newtownards Road the way they do here.

“What’s worse is that it will put people off visiting the road. It’s bad enough there’s little space to park, but if someone comes to see what we have to offer, and they get slapped with a fine of £30, they won’t come back, simple as that.”

Local councillor Chris Stalford said he agreed with traders on the issue, and said Belfast City Council should do what they can to tackle the issue.

“There’s no doubt wardens feel the Lisburn Road is rich pickings,” he said.

“People will already be wary of visiting after hearing just how many tickets are issued here every week. As a council we need to lobby support in reversing this trend, and helping where we can in making parking easier for visitors and those who live and work there.”

Meanwhile,  DRD spokesperson said: “Traffic attendants are deployed to enforce parking restrictions across Northern Ireland. Areas where illegal parking causes most disruption will receive more enforcement than areas with few illegal parking problems. The Lisburn Road is one of the busiest roads in Belfast and deployment is provided accordingly.”

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