A local authority is to refund £347,000 to drivers who have been illegally issued parking fines by unauthorised cameras.

Newham Council in east London issued 4,952 illegal tickets to motorists between 2009 and 2013, using cameras that had not been authorised by the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA).

A change in the law in 2008 required councils to use type-certified cameras in a bid to reduce the use of sub-standard equipment, which cannot be relied upon for evidence.

Last year, Newham Council refused to issue refunds to drivers but has since written to those affected offering £347,000 in total.

£106,843 in illegal fines has currently been claimed back by drivers

A Newham Council spokeswoman told the BBC: "Steps have been taken to ensure the certification is maintained in future."

Currently, 2,643 refunds have been claimed for, with £106,843 paid back to motorists.

Local businesswoman Margaret Stroud, who was illegally fined in May 2009 but not contacted to be offered a refund until this March, said: "It's taken a long time to get offered a refund. We feel quite upset and it has cost the business money to deal with this,” reported the BBC.

"We are frustrated with all of Newham's charges. It was an aggravation the business couldn't afford.

"There might be lots of people who were illegally charged and do not know how to claim back."

Parking charge notices eligible for refund were issued between March 31 2009 – February 6 2013, by uncertified cameras in 12 locations in the London borough. Illegal parking tickets issued within that time that have yet to be paid will be written off.

Picture: Fotolia

Daljinder Nagra


April 8, 2014