The Government fully support the Parking (Code of Practice) Bill of my right hon. Friend the Member for East Yorkshire (Sir Greg Knight). It will create an independent code of practice for private parking companies and deliver robust accountability, providing a much better deal for motorists.
I was pleased to support and sit on the Committee for the Parking (Code of Practice) Bill, which my right hon. Friend the Member for East Yorkshire so expertly steered through Parliament, but parking scams have been operating in Clacton for many years and it is literally driving my constituents around the bend; they want a solution. When this Bill completes its journey and receives Royal Assent, how quickly can it be implemented?
I thank my hon. Friend for his work on the Committee and for highlighting his constituents’ problems. I am pleased to tell him that I have already placed a draft outline of the code in the House of Commons Library and as soon as Royal Assent is achieved a full code will be issued for formal statutory consultation.
What assessment has the Minister made of the Bill of our right hon. Friend the Member for East Yorkshire and its likely impact, and does he believe that more is needed to help to protect our constituents from cowboy parking enforcers?
The current system is one of self-regulation and, sadly, the behaviour of some rogue operators using questionable or intimidating practices means that change is required and we must act. The new code will mean consistency and higher standards for parkers and will ensure that rogue operators are driven out of business.
My constituents—particularly disabled constituents and those, for example, attending hospital appointments—also suffer from punitive cowboy parking operators. What efforts can be made in the code to give special protection to them?
These are exactly the kinds of things that the code of practice will cover, and I will be delighted to receive representations from the hon. Lady as the code is developed.