Townmead Road recycling centre just inside the charging zone
David And Sue Swain Hope Their Car Is Ulez Compliant
Londoners from outside the new Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) are furious as they now have to buy a new car or pay £12.50 to visit their local tip.
The newly expanded zone extends up to the North and South Circular roads.
Areas in Barnes, Mortlake, East Sheen, North Richmond and Kew are in the zone.
Townmead Road Re-use and Recycling Centre in Mortlake is within the zone too.
This means people visiting the tip will now be charged £12.50 per day by TfL if their vehicle is not compliant with emissions rules.
The penalty charge for cars that drive in the ULEZ and don’t pay the daily fee can be £80, rising to £160 if not paid within 14 days.
Local resident Joanna Rutlidge said, “I absolutely hate ULEZ. This is my only car that is suitable and it’s my oldest car. We’re being forced to sell or to buy new cars.
“I’m fortunate that I can afford to buy a new car but what about those who can’t.”
A supervisor at the tip, who wished to remain anonymous, said, “Me and my brothers have had to buy a new vehicle just to get to work, and it’s put us in debt.
“We have to car share now just to come to work. We bought the new car a couple of days before the ULEZ.
“I would have thought [TfL] would have allowed this road to have been just outside of the ULEZ.”
David and Sue Swain from Teddington have to travel into the ULEZ to reach the tip, they said, “We’ve checked TfL’s website twice and we seem to be alright. I hope our car is compliant.”
Townmead Road Refuse and Recycling Centre
But Jane Smith said, “My car’s compliant and I’m supportive of ULEZ. We are going to have to start to make changes to reduce pollution.
“It’s only a tiny change compared to what we need to do for climate change.”
Over two weeks ago, Munira Wilson, Lib Dem MP for Twickenham wrote to the Mayor of London asking him to intervene in the expansion of the ULEZ scheme.
Deputy mayor Heidi Alexander responded that Townmead Recycling Centre and Mortlake Crematorium will be included within the zone stating that “it is important to maintain a clear, consistent and understandable boundary for the public”.
Cllr Gareth Roberts, leader of Richmond Council, said, “Ever since TfL proposed this expansion we have challenged the boundaries.
“We are supportive of the ULEZ as a whole [but] we cannot support the dividing line that this boundary places through our borough and our communities.
“As a result, many of our residents and businesses are now faced with having to pay to visit the recycling centre or the crematorium – something all local tax-payers should be entitled to access for free.”
Staff have been forced to buy new car to get to work
Alex Williams, TfL’s director of city planning, said, “The expanded ULEZ is urgently needed to tackle London’s toxic air, which currently leads to thousands of premature deaths in the city every year and increases the risk of asthma, dementia and cancer and stunts the development of children’s lungs.
“These negative health impacts are seen disproportionately in outer London boroughs. It is expected that the new zone will reduce harmful nitrogen dioxide by around 30 per cent London-wide and we are encouraging those with non-compliant vehicles to use public transport where they can, including our extensive and low-cost bus network.
“The vast majority of people travelling in the zone already meet the standards, and the Mayor’s £61m scrappage scheme has helped take more than 12,000 older, more polluting vehicles off the road.”
James Mayer - Local Democracy Reporter
November 12, 2021