Tribunal adjudicator rules Mare Street left turn ban sign - which has made over £1m for Hackney Council - is ‘inadequate’

PUBLISHED: 11:15 07 March 2019 | UPDATED: 11:36 07 March 2019

A car turning left into Richmond Road from Mare Street. Picture: Polly Hancock

A car turning left into Richmond Road from Mare Street. Picture: Polly Hancock


An independent adjudicator has ruled the signage at Hackney Council’s notorious “no left turn” into Richmond Road – which has racked up over a million pounds in revenue since being installed last summer – is inadequate.

The The "inadequate" left turn ban sign is obscured behind a traffic light. Picture: Emma Bartholomew

Sean Stanton-Dunne of London Tribunals told the Gazette he had come across the case at least five times, and each time “sent a clear message” to the council the signs in Mare Street are “inadequate” – however he does not have the power to force changes.

The matter came to light when reporter Emma Bartholomew appealed a parking ticket her mother was landed with after dropping off clothes donations to St Joseph’s Hospice in Mare Street for its charity jumble sale.

The council rejected the first appeal, but rather than pay the £65 “discount charge” the case was taken before the London Tribunal where you risk paying the full whack of £130.

Allowing the appeal, Mr Stanton-Dunne said: “The no left turn sign is positioned beyond the traffic lights so that it may not be clearly seen before the lights.

A A "no left turn" sign at Bounds Green. Here it is on the traffic light post, rather than behind it. Picture: Emma Bartholomew

“The lights are in front of the sign and so risk causing an obstructed view from car level in the left hand lane.

“There is an advance warning sign further back from the lights but this is tilted at an angle so that it does not directly face the approaching motorist.”

Vehicles can no longer turn left into Richmond Road between 7am and 10am, and 3pm and 7pm, from Monday to Saturday – due to the introduction of a “school street” outside London Fields Primary School.

Of the 20,869 penalty charge notices (PCN) issued in the last nine months, just 1,544 of the 3,705 appealed by motorists were cancelled. Some of these were cancelled by the council after the Gazette reported that some motorists had been caught out at the sign over 20 times.

The The "inadequate" left turn ban sign is obscured behind a traffic light. Picture: Emma Bartholomew

Just 276 people, or 1pc of all those issued with a PCN, appealed to the independent adjudicator, where a third won.

The council remains resolute in stating they believe the signs, which are Department for Transport approved, “go over and above the requirements for a restriction of this type”.

A spokesperson added: “Nonetheless we always remain open to making further improvements, and will be inviting an adjudicator to visit Richmond Road so that we can discuss any concerns they may have, and agree how to address them for the benefit of motorists.”

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