Last reviewed 5 July 2021

The decision by the Government to withdraw powers from Kent County Council (KCC) to clamp heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) parked in laybys across the county has been applauded by business group Logistics UK.

This follows a recent call by haulage groups for a temporary ban on lorry parking in large parts of Kent to be removed, which we reported on last month (see “Kent County Council urged to end its “hostile” parking ban”).

Heidi Skinner, Logistics UK’s policy manager for the South East, said: “The decision by the Department for Transport (DfT) to withdraw KCC’s clamping ban on lorry parking in laybys across several areas of Kent is great news for all those hardworking drivers who keep the country stocked with everything we need.”

Lorry drivers must be able to take their legally required rests during the day without fear of prohibitions, she pointed out.

While the existing shortage of between 1000 and 1200 HGV parking spaces in Kent continues, laybys are often the only option for those seeking somewhere to stop. While today’s announcement is welcome, Ms Skinner continued, it is now vitally important that DfT works closely with the council to create sufficient safe parking spaces.

The welfare of these key workers must be a priority, she insisted, to provide them with access to safe and secure parking spaces to rest – for both their welfare and to meet legally mandated rest periods from driving.

“While the removal of the clamping ban is positive news,” Ms Skinner concluded, “Logistics UK continues to call on Kent County Council to listen to the views of the logistics sector through its current consultation on laybys and ensure that further restrictions and enforcement are not imposed.”