Join me and be a parking hero

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted on here, but today I’m really excited and wanted to share this video we’ve created about my role as a Civil Enforcement Officer (CEO) – and I got to star in it as well!

So many of you seem to have enjoyed hearing about my job over the last year and I really enjoy my role as a CEO. It gives me plenty of exercise as I’m out and about patrolling my area (although sometimes I use the car as well). I get to talk to local people and visitors, answering general enquiries or providing directions on where to park. When I see someone parking illegally I do need to issue a Penalty Charge Notice, but that’s not what I do all day.

When posts come up, we recruit across Braintree, Colchester, Epping Forest, Harlow, Tendring and Uttlesford. It can cause a little confusion, but you need to apply through Colchester Borough Council for any of these areas. You can sign up to the ‘Working for the Council’ e-newsletter to get regular updates on jobs within the North Essex Parking Partnership.

I hope that I’ve inspired some of you to apply for a job as a Civil Enforcement Officer and maybe I’ll be working with you in the future.

Myth Buster: Asking for Parking Restrictions

sma_parking_signs1

We get a lot of applications asking us for new parking or waiting restrictions in local neighbourhoods, so I thought it might interest our followers to know more about the process.

There are lots of different reasons why these changes are requested…maybe a drive keeps getting blocked by visiting vehicles or a car parked in a certain place obstructs traffic and causes tailbacks at peak times.

The great news is that anyone can request a parking change, as long as there is sufficient support for it. The application form is online so you can access it 24/7 and all applications are considered with the local Council. Our form leads you through a series of stages, which have to complete before the application can be submitted.

Before you start filling in the form, you’ll need to bear in mind that you will need to:

  • Show that there is a genuine proven parking safety, congestion or social need.
  • It’s a good idea to contact your local Councillor as you will need to upload evidence to show there is local support for the change.
  • If you’re applying for a new residents only parking scheme you will need to show that a minimum of 75% of residents living in the street support the proposed idea.
  • Our Traffic Road Order (TRO) policies are available on our website which give more details on the types of restrictions which may be put in, It’s worth bearing in mind that depending on the size of the request, it can take from 18 months up to a few years before it’s implemented as it has to go through may approval and consultation processes before the change can be made. If you’re thinking of submitting an application and want to read more, visit our website.

Merry Christmas!

With Christmas just two sleeps away, we’re all feeling very festive here at the NEPP and wanted to take this opportunity to wish all of you a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year!

Keep safe and enjoy the celebrations and as it’s a very busy time of year on the roads you may find the following local travel news and advice useful over the coming weeks:

BBC Essex Travel

Essex Highways – Winter Travel

Essex Police – Winter Driving

Get ready. Get set. VOTE!

dac17_finalist_twitter

I’m super excited today as the public vote has now opened for the Digital Awards Champions – and you can vote for this blog to win!

I was over the moon when my blog won the Gold Award at the Essex Digital Awards in the Business Blog category back in April. Everyone here at the NEPP was so pleased to hear how impressed the judges were with this blog and how it manages to make a difficult subject fun, engaging and understandable.

All the Gold Award winners from the Digital Award Schemes 2016 are now in the running to be overall Champion for their category. Your votes will now choose an overall Champion for each category from the awards that have taken place in Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Kent, Milton Keynes and Surrey.

I’m so pleased that our customers are finding this blog useful and I would like to ask you to cast your vote for this blog. To vote, simply go to www.thedigitalawards.co/champions/blog-business, select North Essex Parking Partnership (Essex) and click the ‘submit vote’ button. The vote will close at 5pm on 20 January 2017.

Happy voting and fingers crossed!

Priory Street Car Park Update

I’ve just popped back to the office on this lovely sunny day and whilst I’m here I wanted to post something about the temporary closure of Priory Street Car Park in Colchester.

Colchester Borough Council has now temporarily closed its Priory Street Car Park until late 2016 whilst works take place to upgrade and improve the site. Alternative parking is available nearby in Britannia, Vineyard Street and St John’s car parks and information and updates about the closure (including alternative arrangements for permit holders) is available on Colchester Borough Council’s website.

I’m now back off on patrol, but enjoy the rest of your week and the warm weather we’re having.

Bank Holidays and Restrictions

With another Bank Holiday just around the corner, I thought I’d share some information about Bank Holidays and parking and waiting restrictions with you all.

At the NEPP we often get a lot of enquiries from members of the public wanting to know if waiting and parking restrictions apply on a Bank Holiday and many people presume that they don’t apply. However, most parking and waiting restrictions do apply on bank holidays as these are some of the busiest days on the roads and there is still a duty to manage the highways and ensure that roads and car parks are safe and free from congestion. If a parking or waiting restriction does not apply on a Bank Holiday then this will always be clearly signposted.

The other thing to be aware of at this time of year is seasonal parking and waiting restrictions. These are usually found in places which require more parking management during the peak season, such as tourist hot spots. Where these restrictions apply, signs detailing the dates they apply to (like the example below) will exist.

Seasonal Parking Restriction Sign

Please check all the signage before parking or you might return to your car after a lovely day out and find you’ve been issued with a Penalty Charge Notice for parking illegally which I’m sure none of you want.

I hope you’ve all found this useful and have a great bank holiday!

P.S – You may find some of my other posts about Seasonal restrictions and Bank Holidays listed below useful too.

Bank Holidays – just another day?

When could you receive a penalty charge notice?

Seasonal Restriction Results

Parking staff now using body-worn cameras

NEPP CEO wearing body-worn camera

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted on here, but today I wanted to share some North Essex Parking Partnership (NEPP) news with you all.

Hopefully some of you will have already read/heard about this in the media today, but just in case you haven’t, starting from today all NEPP Civil Enforcement Officers, such as myself, will now be wearing body-worn cameras whilst on duty. The NEPP’s Committee decided to provide us with these body-worn cameras due to the number of violent and aggressive incidents which we’ve experienced whilst doing our jobs.

Previously, when an incident has taken place and it’s been reported to the Police, we’ve not always had the evidence for any action to be taken against the offenders, however, now the cameras will be activated when we feel we are at risk and the evidence they record can then be used by the Police and in Courts.

We’re all very pleased to have these cameras which will hopefully mean we experience fewer of these types of incidents and, if/when we do experience abuse, we will now be able to capture this and provide the Police and the Courts with the necessary evidence for them to take action.

We will not be using the cameras to gather evidence in relation to parking enforcement and they are solely being used to protect staff doing their job and enhance our wellbeing.

Myself and my colleagues have all undertaken training on how to use the cameras correctly over the last few weeks and all the information about our policies and FAQs etc. can all be found on the NEPP’s website at https://www.parkingpartnership.org/north_policies.asp.

To find out more about the introduction of the cameras, please click here.