Bikers taped their mouths shut in a town hall protest against plans for new parking charges.

The 'silent' protest happened during a meeting of Hackney’s Council at the town hall yesterday (September 27).

Campaigners entered the chamber and stood with tape covering their mouths in anger over the council’s decision not to allow a question about new charges for motorcyclists in the borough.

Hackney Council recently closed its consultation on plans to require motorcycles to have a valid parking permit and to charge them the same fees as other vehicles.

In August the authority introduced a new pricing structure that will see residents with the most polluting vehicles charged more than £1,000 a year to park by 2026.

But some bikers in the borough have slammed the proposals, and had wanted to quiz council leaders on the plans .

The protestors were ejected from the meeting after playing Morrissey’s song The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get at high volume.

Some campaigners have also vowed to continue parking their motorcycles “like cars”, occupying entire parking bays to protest charges for their bikes.

Campaign group Save London Motorcycling claims that while the council encourages motorcyclists to save space by parking at 90 degrees to the kerb at one end of the bay, this is not an enforceable requirement.

Anna, one of the protesters at the Town Hall, said: “Hackney Council have refused to provide any reviewed data showing that these charges will contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions.

“This is a cash grab masquerading as ‘net zero’ policy.”

Hackney Gazette: Anna was one of the protestors yesterday evening Anna was one of the protestors yesterday evening (Image: Save London Motorcycling)

The council says that it is currently reviewing all feedback and comments received during the consultation about the changes to motorcycle charges.

A report will then be prepared detailing any objections and giving recommendations as to whether these should be upheld or not.

Subject to this, the charges are due to come into force in the autumn of this year.

A Hackney Council spokesperson said: “To tackle London’s toxic air and tackle climate change, we need to encourage more people to walk, cycle or take public transport. 

“That’s why we already charge cars to park based on their emissions and it’s why we’re proposing to introduce this change for motorbikes. Under the proposed charges most residents will pay about £70 a year.

“We paused the implementation so we could meet with campaigners, and we’ve revised our proposals to reflect their concerns.”