Parking Good Practice

Parking on roads is often restricted to prevent traffic congestion or for safety reasons. It is important to observe and comply with restrictions which are shown with traffic signs and/or road markings. Parking may be permitted only at certain times usually due to the need to keep roads clear at peak traffic periods.

At some locations, especially those in or near town centres, parking may be allowed for limited durations. This helps customers to park reasonably close to shops for a short period.

Drivers also need to be aware of areas where parking is reserved for particular uses such as loading, blue badge holders or permit holders.

Safe and responsible parking

Where parking is not specifically prohibited, drivers must not assume that it is always appropriate to park. The absence of a restriction does not automatically mean that it is legal, safe or reasonable to park. Always consider how your parking will affect other road users. Do not park where it would endanger, inconvenience or obstruct pedestrians or other road users.

The Highway Code

Full details can be found in the Highway Code which states that:

You must not park:

  • where there are specific restrictions (eg yellow lines, clearways)
  • on a road with double white lines (in the middle of the road)
  • on a tram, bus or cycle lane during its period of operation
  • on a cycle track
  • in parking spaces reserved for specific users, such as Blue Badge holders, residents or motorcycles, unless entitled to do so
  • where your vehicle or trailer would be in a dangerous position or where it causes any unnecessary obstruction of the road.

Do not stop or park:

  • near a school entrance
  • anywhere you would prevent or restrict access for Emergency Services
  • at or near a bus or tram stop or taxi rank
  • on the approach to a level crossing or tramway crossing
  • opposite or within 10 metres (32 feet) of a junction, except in an authorised parking space
  • near the brow of a hill or hump bridge
  • Opposite or near to a traffic island
  • Opposite or near another parked vehicle or road works if this would cause an obstruction
  • where you would force other traffic to enter a tram lane
  • where the kerb has been lowered to help wheelchair users, powered mobility vehicles and other non-motorised road users
  • in front of an entrance to a property
  • on a bend
  • where you would obstruct cyclists' use of cycle facilities.

Pavement Parking

Parking on pavements may be dangerous as it can obstruct pedestrians and lead to people of all ages and abilities having to walk in the road. Those using or pushing wheel chairs or buggies may need the full width of the pavement to get past parked cars without having to negotiate kerbs to use the road.

Parking on pavements creates a hazard for blind and visually impaired people.

Places where Specific Restrictions apply

Specific restrictions on parking may be made by legal order, details of which are available online.

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