Someone told me this morning that an instructor had been wheel clamped for parking on one of the roads near to the Colwick driving test centre. It was one of those licensed cowboy companies who charge £150 or more for unlocking you.
At a guess, I’d say someone with no conscience or morals decided they’d found a way of making some money now that the test centre is located around there, and so attracts learner cars. Inside the test centre, notices warn that the likes of Trent Concrete (Road No. 3) have been bitching about learners using the car park outside their property.
I have to admit, instructors sometimes don’t help themselves. Only yesterday I had gone behind Halfords (to cover bay parking) for the sole reason that there was no one else there. As always, if there had have been anyone else there, I’d have used another area of the park (and there were plenty free yesterday). But that didn’t stop a BSM car (with more than two people in it – looks like he was piggybacking) turning up and getting in the way. He actually prevented us from driving off (we’d finished, anyway), but this is happening time and time again. I hope he can lip read, because his cheerful wave didn’t cut any ice with me!
But they behave this stupidly wherever they go. They do corner reverses when there are cars parked there (illegally, admittedly, but that still doesn’t make it OK to block the corner completely and piss other drivers off). They queue up to use THE corner, or THE bay, or THE car for parallel park. They don’t have the brains to find somewhere else. They are STILL ignoring the test centre manager’s ban on practising bay parking at the test centre itself (and one of them is a BSM car), and holding up tests (including one of mine a couple of weeks ago).
There are quite a few places I use over a very wide area - but many of them only when it is quiet (or out of hours). There’s one girl whose car I often use for parallel park who I surprised at Christmas by taking her a bottle of wine and saying thanks for not kicking up a stink, but I have quiet and reliable places I can use in wide-spaced places such as Sawley, Long Eaton, Bingham, Clifton, West Bridgford, and plenty of others – I just have to plan the lesson accordingly. But some prat who is trying to keep his mileage to a minimum and who only works daytimes/weekdays is bound to try using a private car park when the offices are still open, and so get us all banned. That’s why those bloody notices keep appearing at the test centre. To be honest, some of these idiots only ever seem to do bay parking – it must be because it saves on petrol.
If anyone has any more details about this alleged clamping, please let me know using the Contact Form.
EDIT 20/05/2010: Apparently it has happened again – someone sent me this photo:
Something has got to be done. There are no signs, no yellow lines… nothing to suggest you cannot park on the road. In fact, fishermen park there for extended periods.
I never leave my car unattended. I can only assume this guy either did it to take his pupil into the test centre for a look round, or went for a walk down by the river in a free period. There’s nothing else down there – no shops or anything.
Mind you, there is one positive that appears to have come out of it – for some people, at least. A few of the forums are full of it – very sad people gloating uncontrollably due to the fact that it is a BSM car.
As I’ve said before: driving instructors, eh? What a bunch of sad cases some of them are!
EDIT 01/06/2010: I was at the test centre yesterday, and noticed a letter pinned to the noticeboard. It is from a company called City Estates , and they advise that for “health & safety reasons” the “landlord” of the Colwick Industrial Estate has introduced wheel-clamping. The urge people to follow the “parking laws”.
City Estates’ website is not particularly dynamic. The one and only link on it is to a company called West One . Interestingly, when you click this link (and compare West One’s address with the one on that letter at the test centre) you find that City Estates and West One co-exist at the same address in Sheffield – and a quick scan of West One’s portfolio of commercial properties it lets out reveals that units and land on the Colwick Industrial Estate features prominently.
So it looks like the “landlord” City Estates is warning us of, and who has introduced clamping, is… City Estates. Fishy, eh? And who sets the “laws” they are referring to? I guess that would be City Estates, too, seeing as it is a private estate and there are very few yellow lines.
I was talking to someone who works at the test centre and apparently a lot of cars and lorries have also been clamped (so it isn’t just instructors, after all). The move isn’t popular, but as this person said: “what can you do?” I was told that there was a Health & Safety audit carried out and the roads were snarled up with lorries and cars.
I’m still not convinced. It’s a punitive action designed to make money – and I’m pretty certain driving instructors using that area has had more to do with it than the lorries who park(ed) overnight on a regular basis for years.
Oh, yes. And there are now warning signs – they were never there before, and they aren’t very big. Some are placed quite high up.
EDIT 27/08/2010: And don’t forget that the law is now against these cowboys – or will be later this year.