Dark days of clamping in Lewes district are behind us

Norman Baker celebrates winning war on clampers outside Laura Ashley, Lewes
Norman Baker celebrates winning war on clampers outside Laura Ashley, Lewes

FROM Friday October 5 rules outlawing clamping on private land will come into force.

Lewes MP Norman Baker has said: “The dark days of private clamping are now behind us.”

Behind Laura Ashley in Lewes has become a hotspot for these zealous clampers with many local residents and visitors to the town getting slapped with huge penalties for parking there unaware of the risks they faced.

Unfortunately, however, unlike regular parking enforcement, the laws in place at the time essentially gave the clampers the ability to name their price with £125 often being the starting price to get your car back after it was clamped.

There was also very little route to appeal, with the only one available being an internal one with the company that clamped you.

Unsurprisingly, said the MP, these tended to be less than sympathetic.

The problem also reached Newhaven where a District Nurse was clamped while she tended to a sick patient. That clamping company refused to remove the clamp for two hours and the nurse was personally charged £130.

Mr Baker took up the issue in the Commons in 2009. In May this year, Parliament finally passed an Act outlawing clamping on private land. Now the public will no longer have to face unfair and overpriced fines, he said.