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BMF Warns On Future Bike Parking Charges

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The British Motorcyclists Federation is warning of the possibility of countrywide parking charges being introduced for motorcycles following the failure in the Court of Appeal to overturn a High Court decision that backed the parking charges traffic order implemented by Westminster City Council in January 2010.

The ‘No To Bike Parking Tax’ campaign (NTBPT), a campaign group supported by the 80,000 strong BMF, had brought the appeal but three senior judges today ruled there was "nothing in the grounds of appeal" and dismissed their case.

Warren Djanogly, who led the NTBPT campaign, said: "We are hugely disappointed, but it is not over yet. We are now thinking of taking our case to the European courts where we expect to get a fairer hearing."

The BMF, whose members helped in raising the money required for the bringing of the appeal, say that cash-strapped Local Authorities across the country have been watching the situation closely and with the loss of the appeal, motorcyclists could now be faced with the threat of a nationwide rollout of parking charges.

A strong supporter of the ‘No To Bike Parking Tax’ (NTBPT) campaign from its inception in August 2008 the BMF say while the campaign gained massive rider support in London, many councils across the UK, possibly starting with Birmingham and Manchester, were also considering bringing in similar Pay by Phone charges for motorcycles and it was only the Westminster legal case that was preventing them doing so.

If parking charges were to be introduced, the Tax Payers Alliance have calculated that annually, it would cost the UK’s motorcycling community a staggering £93,000,000 in parking charges.

BMF Chairman, Anna Zee, who has taken part in most of the big anti-tax demonstrations together with a number of other BMF members, said she was deeply disappointed at the verdict. “The use of motorcycles and scooters in urban environments can contribute greatly to easing congestion and anything which discourages such use is to be deplored.”

Commenting on the ruling, the BMF’s Government Relations Executive Chris Hodder, said: “This is disappointing and is a blow to everyone involved in the campaign, but more than that, the ruling that Westminster’s parking charges for motorcycles are legal could well signal the end of free parking for motorcyclists across the UK.”

The BMF will now be asking members of its regional network to carefully monitor Local Authorities for any signs of plans to implement motorcycle parking charges.

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