Profits from parking fines has increased by a massive ten per cent as new data reveals how much councils in south-east London have made.

Almost £820m was made from motorists who failed to buy the right ticket or were caught parking in unauthorised bays, according to the RAC Foundation.

The figure was calculated by taking income from parking charges and penalty notices and then deducting running costs.

It represents a 10 per cent leap on the 2015/16 surplus of £744 million.

Income was up 6 per cent and costs rose 2 per cent in the past year.

The money made must be used on transport projects, with local authorities responsible for their own surplus.

Martin Tett, the Local Government Association's transport spokesman, claimed councils must "strike a balance" when setting charges in a bid to ensure there are parking spaces available.

He said: "Parking charges help not only keep the roads clear but keep pedestrians, motorists and cyclists safe and ensure people can park near their homes and local shops.

"Income raised through on-street parking charges is spent on running parking services and any surplus is only spent on essential transport projects, such as tackling our national £12 billion roads repair backlog and creating new parking spaces."

In south east London and north Kent, Bromley ranked the highest for having the biggest surplus.

Bromley made £5,912,000 in 2015-16 and then a massive £6,123,000 in 2016-17, placing them 33 out of the 353 councils.

Lewisham made £4.8m in 2015-16, a figure that rose to £5.4m in the last year, placing them at 37.

Greenwich made £2.2m last year and £3.4M between 2016-17, making them 56 on the list.

Bexley collected collected £2.7M in 2016-17, a rise from £1.8M in the same period before, putting them at 75.

Dartford made just £8m in the last year, and in the most recent period made a loss of £17m putting them at 310.

In one parking ticket debacle, an elderly lady was fined by Smart Parking for entering a O instead of a 0 for her registration plate in a free car park.