26 Jan 2024
ULEZ Zones

The controversial Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) scheme which has dogged Swanley in recent months needs a ‘complete rethink’, according to prospective MP Richard Streatfeild.

Since its expansion across outer London last August, many residents in and near Swanley have been hit by the charges as they commute for work or visit relatives.

Liberal Democrat Richard, who will be standing against Laura Trott in the forthcoming General Election, said: “It’s completely unreasonable that people in Swanley are being hit by ULEZ.

“The way it’s been set up is too blunt, too inflexible and proving to be unfair to a significant number of people.

“ULEZ worked in central London because of its excellent public transport links.  That’s not the case in most of outer London.

“The scheme needs to be completely re-thought so that it brings the welcome benefits of clean air but without penalising residents.

My message to those affected is that we Lib Dems will fix the flawed scheme introduced by the Tory Government and Labour Mayor.

“We will stop people in Swanley being penalised by making ULEZ better targeted and fair and by investing in our public transport links.” 

ULEZ was first introduced in April 2019 for inner London.

It was expanded across the whole of Greater London in August 2023. 

Lib Dems in areas affected campaigned for a delay to the expansion, but it was overruled at the High Court.

Our group on the Greater London Authority (GLA) proposed:

  • A longer lead-in time for people to make the change to newer vehicles;
  • To double the scrappage scheme with an additional £100 million and to allow Blue Badge holders to apply; and
  • To invest £50 million in bus services in Outer London, including demand-responsive buses

The amendment was carried unanimously. Labour and the Conservatives abstained.

However, the Mayor rejected the proposals. 

The matter was taken to the High Court and, in July 2023, it allowed the Mayor to proceed with the expansion.

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