Councils banning ‘too long’ cars from public car parks

Cars that are longer than five metres have been banned from using public car parks by five councils, a Freedom of Information request has revealed.

Wokingham, South Hams, Broadland, South Norfolk and West Devon have all introduced length restrictions for vehicles using their parking facilities.

The limit of five metres is shorter than a Range Rover and a Mercedes S-Class, says This Is Money, which made the FOI submission.

The Audi A8 and BMW 7 Series are also longer than five metres – as is the new Kia EV9 electric SUV.

There is now speculation more councils could start banning vehicles that are too long, as part of a broader campaign against larger cars.

What’s more, 91% of councils say they are not planning to make parking spaces bigger, either – despite today’s vehicles being so much larger than yesterday’s motors.

Cars have been growing, on average, 10mm wider every two years – yet the regulations around the size of an off-street parking bay haven’t changed for more than 50 years.

The smallest an average parking space can be remains 2.4 metres wide and 4.8 metres long.  

However, for on-street parking, the minimum required space is 1.8 metres – and 52% of the top 100 models sold in Europe are now wider than this.

Ask HJ

How do I appeal a parking ticket when there was no restriction sign present?

I parked in a residential street with no parking restriction signs. I returned to my vehicle two days later and there was a 'warning letter' AND a PCN on my windscreen. The local authority had put up signs in the two days I had left my vehicle. I appealed the ticket but it was refused- I'm now at the Notice to Owner stage. Anyone have any advice on what to state in my next appeal?
You can read our in-depth guide into appealing parking tickets here: but we would suggest that the best approach would be to prove that the signs were installed on the road after your car was parked. You may need to contact the council separately in order to gain the required evidence for when the work was carried out, as well as any evidence that verifies when you parked the vehicle.
Answered by David Ross
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