By Emma Dodd
Twice as many parking tickets were issued to campervans in and around Newquay this summer, bosses at Cornwall Council have announced.
A total of 466 penalty charge notices were handed out to campervans staying overnight mainly at beaches around the town in July and August alone.
This is compared to 223 across the same two-month period a year earlier, highlighting the increased demand for pitches during the coronavirus pandemic.
The bosses said the crackdown on overnight stays, which bring tourism to the region, was a direct response to antisocial behaviour.
Extra restrictions were brought in on a number of Newquay roads, because many van owners were staying for extended periods of time.
The Newquay Safe partnership predicted that more people would be tempted to park up on the roads, as campsites were functioning at reduced capacity in the wake of restrictions being eased.
Couple this with an increased demand for staycations and it was always likely that Newquay – a popular campervanning spot – would find itself very busy.
The partnership tackles community safety issues brought up by residents and many were concerned that inconsiderate parking could hamper emergency service vehicles in the event of a callout.
Cllr Rob Nolan, portfolio holder for environment and public protection, told CornwallLive: “Ticketing is not about generating money for the Council.
“It’s usually a last resort designed to penalise those who will not adhere to the laws in place. Our goal is to stop people parking where they shouldn’t – and wherever possible, our CEOs [civil enforcement officers] will ask drivers to move on, rather than issue a ticket.”
Newquay walks a fine line between relying on tourism to bring revenue to local businesses and keeping its population safe from the virus and inappropriate parking.
A number of local authorities sent out pleas to campervan owners not to set off on a staycation without a reservation this summer, as demand outstripped supply in many parts of the UK.