For the latest advice about COVID-19, how services are affected and how the council is responding, visit our Coronavirus pages.

Council clamps down on idling coach drivers

Date: 
Wed, 22/01/2020

After previous warnings were ignored, idling coach drivers are set to lose prime Westminster parking spots

In an open call to some the country’s biggest coach companies, Westminster City Council warned last year that drastic action would need to be taken if drivers continued to idle their engines whilst parked. After complaints persisted and calls to work together on anti-idling campaigns were ignored, plans are now in place to remove several coach parking spots in the city.

The three spots in Horseferry Road, close to the Houses of Parliament, are in line to be removed and replaced with EV charging points, cycling hangars, and resident parking following a public consultation. Part of an ongoing scheme to reduce unnecessary emissions and noise pollution, providing more sustainable use for the local community.

Cllr Tim Mitchell, Deputy Leader (Delivery) said;

“There is no sugar-coating the need to tackle traffic emissions in Westminster, so if we’re truly going to challenge this head on, then we have no choice but to take drastic action such as this.”

“We threatened to remove these spaces and have now done so, and I hope that this is a clear message to coach operators that they need to work with us to clamp down on engine idling. With hundreds of coaches travelling into the city every day, this small change from drivers would help steer us towards a cleaner, greener London.”

The spaces, located on a residential street close to nurseries, schools, and local gardens, have been a source of ongoing complaints against drivers who insist running their large engines whilst parked. Pumping out dangerous and unnecessary air and noise pollution.  

This latest action comes as part of Westminster City Council’s #DontBeIdle campaign, which aims to tackle emissions put out by vehicles idling their engines around the borough. Whilst several large businesses have already signed on to the Council’s pledge to reduce their vehicles idling, many of the biggest coach operators in the country have not and have ignored public calls to do so.

Westminster suffers from some of the worst air pollution in the country, with road transport contributing to more than half of the deadly emissions. This crack down on coach drivers who refuse to turn off their engines is just part of the council’s ongoing campaign to clean up air in the borough.

Last updated: 23 January 2020