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Folkestone and Hythe District Council bring back parking restrictions as coronavirus lockdown lifts

A district council has announced that it is re-introducing parking restrictions as the coronavirus lockdown begins to ease.

Many councils across Kent have been operating a 'light-touch' approach to parking, with officials only ensuring that drivers are parking safely and not obstructing emergency vehicles.

Parking restrictions have been brought back by FHDC. Stock Image
Parking restrictions have been brought back by FHDC. Stock Image

However, Folkestone and Hythe District Council (FHDC) has announced that parking restrictions on roads in the area will now be enforced as normal.

The decision has been announced as the council is "expecting more people to be out-and-about in the coming weeks and months".

Parking restrictions are now operating as normal in the council's area, however the council has confirmed that social care and NHS workers will remain exempt.

A statement on the council's official twitter account on Thursday read: "Our officers have been taking a ‘light-touch’ approach in terms of parking enforcement in Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs) since the COVID-19 measures were first brought in.

"Yes, they have been on patrol – but mostly to make sure motorists were parking sensibly around junctions and leaving enough space for emergency vehicles.

"With the slight shift in central government guidance, we are expecting more people to be out-and-about in the coming weeks and months.

"As a result, we are resuming parking enforcement in CPZs across the district from Monday (18 May).

"Fines will be issued to those in breach of restrictions – please check local signage for more information."

Of the other councils across the county, Canterbury, Dover, Gravesham and Sevenoaks have confirmed that the relaxed parking restrictions will stay in place until further notice.

General restrictions in Maidstone, Thanet and Swale will continue to be relaxed until at least July 1, although charges are still in place in Swale Council car parks.

Key workers are exempt from restrictions across most of the county
Key workers are exempt from restrictions across most of the county

A spokesperson for Ashford Borough Council said that parking restrictions have remained in place in all council car parks, but that key workers are exempt from parking restrictions as long as they provide proof on their dashboard.

Dartford Borough Council, Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council, and Tunbridge Wells Borough Council have all been contacted for comment on their policies.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent


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