The shared parking service for the London Borough of Bexley and Bromley Council has been commended by the British Parking Association.

This was in the Positive Responses to the Pandemic category at the British Parking Awards.

It was recognised for its work on special free temporary parking arrangements to help key workers during Covid-19.

This shared parking service was among the first in London to put arrangements in place to ensure that groups of key workers could access free parking to assist their critical work for local residents and communities.

An online service was made available through both Councils’ websites for a special permit to park in council car parks and at specific on-street locations free of charge.

Bexley's Cabinet Member for Places, Cllr Peter Craske said: “From scratch we set up a scheme to provide free parking for over 4,000 volunteers, carers and emergency workers.

"Our team worked incredibly hard to set this up and we know how valued it was.

"This commendation recognises that parking service teams are not just about issuing penalties.

"I know that the work was carried out during a very difficult time when working from home was the norm and much of the work was done outside of normal working hours to keep up with the demands.

"Well done to everyone involved.”

Cllr William Huntington-Thresher; Portfolio Holder for Environment and Community Services at Bromley Council, said: "I am pleased that key workers were able to benefit from these parking schemes at a crucial period during the pandemic, so that they could complete their essential work for our communities without delay or inconvenience.

"This scheme is one of many examples of efforts undertaken behind the scenes at the Council during the pandemic to ensure essential services continued to be delivered to residents.

"It is excellent that they are now being recognised.

"I would like to personally thank the parking service team for all their hard work and dedication in delivering the schemes and ensuring the process was prioritised for the benefit of our residents.”

All parking applications were individually assessed to ensure they met the relevant criteria.

The permit details for successful applicants were added to a system visible to Civil Enforcement Officers through their hand-held equipment to ensure the keyworkers could park without risk of receiving a Penalty Charge Notice.

After the service processed over 7,000 applications across Bexley and Bromley over a three month-period, both schemes came to an end on June 30, 2020.

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