Two new bus lane cameras made more than £2.2 million in their first full year of operation in the centre of Brighton.
The cameras were installed as part of the Valley Gardens revamp and snared 84,000 drivers – or 7,000 a month – since they went live in January last year.
The revenue raised from the two camera sites alone was almost more than three times higher than the £774,000 generated by all the bus lane cameras in Brighton and Hove in 2020.
And the number of drivers ticketed after being filmed in one location, York Place, amounting to 54,441, was almost double the entire number of tickets – 28,425 – issued by all cameras in 2020.
Councillors from across the political parties expressed incredulity when they first heard that thousands of drivers were being ticketed for being in the new bus lanes – or “bus gates”.
A Green councillor, Jamie Lloyd, even admitted that he had been ticketed himself at a town hall meeting in the autumn.
The former Labour leader of the council, Nancy Platts, told the same meeting: “An inordinate number of people are being caught out.
“It doesn’t sound humanly possible to issue that many tickets. It sounds like we need to improve the signage. I can’t imagine that number of people deliberately disobeying the traffic regulations.”
And Conservative councillor Robert Nemeth said: “There must be something wrong with the bus gates. There can’t be that many crazy motorists who are intent on breaking the rules.”
The details about the number of drivers being ticketed emerged in response to questions from Councillor Nemeth.
Five cameras monitor vehicles along Valley Gardens, where the £11 million new road layout bars cars from the bus lanes on the western side.
The car ban applies to Marlborough Place, St George’s Place, York Place and St Peter’s Place and came in as part of the two-year revamp of Valley Gardens, completed in September 2020.
“Local traffic” is allowed although not everyone appears to understand the extent of the word “local”.
And some councillors said that people were unfamiliar with the term “bus gates”, with the painted signs on the road already fading.
The national Traffic Penalty Tribunal, which rules on appeals against fines for driving in bus lanes, said: “The term ‘bus gate’ is interchangeable with ‘bus lane’ in terms of enforcement of regulations.”
Brighton and Hove City Council started sending warning letters to those who strayed into the bus lanes from September 2020 and, from January 2021, the council has been issuing £60 tickets.
Since then the York Place camera has caught 54,441 drivers and the camera in Gloucester Place has snapped 29,506.
The council said that the cameras had generated £1,473,000 and £804,000 respectively – or £2,227,000 in total – from the £60 fines which are reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days. The level of the fine is set nationally.
Council officials said that fewer than 100 appeals relating to the two cameras were upheld by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal last year, with almost 200 rulings in the council’s favour.
In total last year 20 bus lane camera sites across Brighton and Hove generated £3,669,000 for the council.
This compared with £774,000 in 2020 from 15 cameras and £1,843,000 from 17 cameras in 2019.
Last year there were seven camera sites that raised six or seven figures compared with two six-figure sites the year before and eight in 2019.
|Brighton’s six and seven-figure bus lane cameras in 2021|
|St Peter’s Place||5,132||£128,623.69|
|York Place and St George’s Place||54,441||£1,473,434.59|
Cracking result. Save half, spend the other half on more cameras!
Amazing how these cameras are bringing in millions to the coffers of the B&H council, yet very few cameras are capturing images of crimes being committed. It shows where their priorities lle..
Two birds with one stone, excellent result. Safer roads for all users and we get some of the previously untapped gold mine that dangerous motorists represent.
You obviously don’t drive and haven’t got a clue ..
Why can’t cameras be in place to prevent crimes rather then collect fines ?
You are assuming that all motorists who have been tricked – sorry ticketed – by the council are dangerous. Just like the incompetent and misguided council, you have an obvious hatred of all motorists. If you read the article avsaaramore carefully you will find that Labour Leader of the Council, Nancy Platts, has said that “It doesn’t sound humanly possible to issue that many tickets. It sounds like we need to improve the signage. I can’t imagine that number of people deliberately disobeying the traffic regulations.” The avaricious council members, must be clapping their hands with glee, at the knowledge that they are cheating so many unwary and innocent motorists..
Car Delenda Est
Interesting comment, dangerous motorists.
The whole of area around the so called Valley Gardens is dangerous with new road layouts that has caused more congestion and pollution and confusion for all motorists. The Gardens themselves is a shambles, very unpleasant, hardly any bins and no toilet facilities. The various events has caused this area to look like a mud pit.
Buses have lost their dedicated bus lane and already there have been a number of Bus V Pedestrian incidents, near misses with Taxis and journey times have increased. The area is dangerous and a complete shambles.
Clearly this is a lucrative entrapment exercise which is primarily about raising money. I too have been issued with a fine after visiting Baker Street Bikes to get my bike wheel repaired.
I am from outside Brighton and am not familiar with the street layouts. I truly was not aware this was a Bus Lane or Gate (I have not even heard of the latter) and was completely dumbfounded when I received a letter from Brighton and Hove council demanding £70.
I am totally trapped and powerless and have to pay it because honest soul that I am, I have to accept that although it was an innocent mistake…. it was me.
This feeling of being tricked (I am sure I saw a sign that said local traffic as I turned left into York Place) and the feeling of powerlessness leaves a bitter taste and wondering what to do.
Well actually there is something I can do and it is something I recommend everyone who feels that Brighton and Hoves entrapment scheme is wrong; and that is withdraw your business/custom from Brighton.
I was on the cusp of buying a £1200 Gravel Bike from Baker Street bikes and have now decided against it. My apologies to the salesman that spent 10 mins with me and had pretty much persuaded me to buy. I do feel a little bit sorry for Baker Street bikes as they may not have been directly involved in their council’s decision making but how else am I to protest legally.
I estimate that I spend £500 per year in Brighton on eating out and clothes per year…not anymore. If more visitors stay away and let Brighton and Hove council know why they are doing so, maybe they will remove their immoral entrapment scheme!
‘And Conservative councillor Robert Nemeth said: “There must be something wrong with the bus gates. There can’t be that many crazy motorists who are intent on breaking the rules.”’
Below are official figures from gov website,
‘On 20mph roads, 87% of cars exceeded the speed limit during weekdays, and 89% during the weekend (Figure 15).’
Bus gate fines are not speeding fines!
The point is there clearly are many, many people willing to break the rules on the roads.
What an absolute con, never saw any proper signs to warn me of the offence being committed, never heard of a bloody bus gate, on top of every other inflation busting rise have to pay this , aaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh! I am not blind and drive HGV,s the council should not be allowed to get away with this unchallenged.
The trouble is they will get away with it, and they do so every time, regardless of the chaos and misery they cause. They are so arrogant, knowing that there are masses of idiots living in the city(?) who are happy to support the Green/Labour alliance when it comes to election time. And let’s not forget the sheep in the form of students who don’t live here but unfortunately have the ill conceived right to vote for this council.
It looks like you got your figures from London, those are the exact numbers quoted by TfL.
Further research from the National data sites, DfT and other official motoring organisations informs us the actual figure is 61% who exceed the 20 limit.
Here’s an interesting article that I found. In 2021 transport reviews showed there was an increase in road traffic accidents on 20mph roads since there introduction, interestingly, minor injuries increased with serious and fatal remaining around the same. This was interpreted by the various organisations as evidence that 20mph do not work.
Evidence and statistics from from DfT show the avarage speed in 20 zones is 24 mph.
There are many reasons why a driver may exceed the limit by a few MPH, road cambers, concentrating on the surroundings through busy shopping areas, like London Road, one should be looking out for pedestrians walking into the road, cyclists and motorcyclists that may over or undertake, and looking out for other hazards not eyes down on the speedo.
Wes, You must be a complete imbecile to believe figures on a government website.
Just paid a lovely £30 fine to Brighton and Hove City Council and I’m definitely not a ‘crazy motorist’. The signage at York Place is shockingly bad, i’m not surprised so many drivers fall in to the Brighton Council Cash Trap!
I don’t i’ll be taking my kids to Brighton for anymore trips to the Pier and Shopping etc.:-(
A total joke and rip off, there are no clear signs warning of a Bus Lane, what the hell is a “Bus Gate?” Every driver in the UK knows what a Bus Lane is, simple so what we will do is change it to confuse the hell out of drivers and then benefit from our fraud. The council should be fined for purposely trying to deceive drivers and benefit from their confusion. It’s clear from the number of fines that no one knows what the hell a “Bus Gate” is, if there was a gate there it would make some sense but there is not. It is a clear fraudulent activity by Brighton and Hove Council.
Totally agree with most of the comments on here as I just received a £30 fine in the post for driving along York Place last Monday evening @ 9:30pm. I had absolutely no idea I had done anything wrong?! – Until I received the fine.
I used to love coming to Brighton – Not any more – I won’t return back & Brighton will “die”….& I hope the council along with it when mugs like us won’t be paying their wages anymore!
Typical Labour / Green council !
Ha Ha so many comments.
So many drivers on here unable to read clear signage, big blue ones indicating a Right Turn at North Road, amazing how many big signs they passed.
Perhaps visits to Specsavers would suffice.
Doesn’t the sign also say Local Traffic pointing to the left which sends cars along the bus lane?
Yes it does but there again the next sign along tells you to turn at Trafalgar Street, so ?
Just received the fine regarding BUS GATE!!!!
What the hell is a bus gate. Bit of a con not nearly enough clear signage!!!!
This whole thing is tantamount to extortion. There is no reason why the ‘bus gate’ signs should not have been simply the conventional NO ENTRY (except buses and bikes).
The fact that hundreds of innocent people are being penalised for not seeing the signs, perhaps because they are obscured by buses or they are unfamiliar with what a bus gate is.
Council officers pretend there is no problem and the protests of elected councillors are ignored.
Brighton has long had a reputation of being officer driven and this fiasco demonstrates it perfectly.
And to the clown who uses a pompous pretentious Latin moniker you might try currus.
They can’t put up no entry signs because another traffic are allowed and need access, like Trafalgar street for example.
Lots of people on here who say they don’t know what a Bus Gate is, surely they know what a BUS is.
The word bus alone should alert the driver to think about taking more attention of the many signs that will advise drivers of what they can and can’t do.
ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE COIN
Bus Gates are not mentioned in the Highway code, therefore are not subject to any rules or laws within the code.
However, Blue compulsory signs are in place that are not easily seen but are legally binding and that’s where the problem lies.
There are no signs at the bottom of Edward street to inform drivers they need to follow ahead for London and not turn left as we used to do.
Having driven through Brighton for fifty years suddenly change a well established route with poor signage and unfamiliar names, ‘bus gate’?.Being surrounded by numerous large buses and obvious inadequate signs it is not so surprising the amount of unfortunate errors are being made…Perhaps my recent fine could be used to install better and less confusing instructions.
This is a total rip off there are no large signs , there should be a no through road sign for cars , if they want it for only buses they should pedestrian the whole bloody road , I have taken my mum to a hospital appointment 3 times and got done twice , now I have to rearrange a journey avoiding the rip of our Own people areas of Brighton which are many , tell ya the truth a small indicator on trip advisor saying stay away Brighton is a huge trap for car visitors could ruin visitors going there because of these sneaky cameras and let’s face it you drive around Brighton you could get hit by 3 in one day ridiculous get a pair Brighton council rip off Britain u are ! Sorry state u are
Thank you m.williams for the donation.
Very annoyed motorist from Newcastle!! Came to Brighton for 3days holiday always wanted to visit the south coast and had a very enjoyable time with my partner, praised the place and the lovely people we met, now 2 weeks later get a bloody fine for passing through a bus gate what ever that is? On leaving Brighton as anyone would do these days follow the sat nav obviously took me through this bus gate don’t recall seeing any signs!! Absolute rip off Brighton and Hove council you are a disgrace!! After this you will never get anymore money from me!! Will never go back there!!
Derek can I please say thank you very much for your kind words in relation to your visit.
We at BHCC are delighted you have rated us a disgrace.
We are grateful you have decided not to return to our great city, this will allow fewer vehicles in our city with less congestion and pollution that comes with it and in turn, we can provide more cycling lanes, pavement space and more room for our homeless friends, we can move forward with our plans to completely ruin this city and your contribution of not returning and spending your cash in this city is welcomed.
Thank you with grateful and heartfelt joy.
Just been billed £99 for going into a bus gate. Like so many others here I have no idea what a bus gate is. I came to visit Brighton with my family, visiting the sea life centre and ate at local establishments.
Im a normal driver, but didnt see any signs indicating that this was a bus only area.
Simple outcome is that I wont visit your city again……you may be happy that bus lanes are freer, and that motorists are being targeted. But the overall outcome is that your city will get fewer visitors.
Hi Chris. Yes that is what our council want. Once we are rid of them please come back. We are not all like our green Councillors.
Sad thing is Chris it’s not a Bus Only area, depending where you want to get too ordinary traffic can legally enter the bus gates to access side roads.
If you enter at York Place you must turn right at the traffic lights at North Road, yet you can turn left from North street into the bus gate, but you can’t go further than Trafalgar street.
It is confusing but there is signage in place.
Hi Chris, unfortunately the Bus Gate is called a gate because it is used for ordinary traffic to access certain areas and roads.
Buses, Taxi’s, delivery vehicles, disabled and residents have access to these road hence ‘Gate’ and not Bus Lane.
I think there should be a judicial review of this scandalous affair.
It is abundantly obvious the signage is NOT easily visible.
They can be obscured by double deck buses on both sides and I suspect this is what has been happening.
As others have said, the simple traditional NO ENTRY signs (except for buses) would do the job. The fact that the council officers are ignoring this seems perverse and the motivation to do so is apparent.
I do hope the inevitable reckoning costs those responsible their jobs. Too much to hope for I suppose.
Brighton and Hove councillors accept that they are effectively coining in money through confusing visitors with their Bus Gate schemes. One councillor who did not want to be named said that “the millions of money taken from petrol heads who are stupid enough to drive into Brighton more than makes up for loss of business revenue by declining visitor numbers.” They went onto say that “As far as we are concerned “business owners can squeal as much as they like but let’s face it business rates are a static or declining revenue stream whereas bus Lane revenue is an expanding source of revenue for us”. With the possibility of expanding bus lanes elsewhere in Brighton and/or altering bus Lane/Gate configurations when revenue drops through driver familiarity, it is a racing certainty that Brighton and Hove City Council’s lucrative war of hate against motorists is here to continue.
As a representative of Brighton & Hove CC, I can confirm we will be taking on board this feedback as we look to roll out more Bus Gates across the city over the coming years (along with the infringement enforcement cameras), with 16 more planned for 2023.
To make things easier for motorists we intend to fluctuate when Bus Gates can be used by cars, for every Monday, Wednesday & Saturday then the moon is waning cars can use the Bus Gates, then when the moon is waxing cars can use the Bus Gates on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Only on a Full Moon can cars use the Bus Gates on a Sunday.
We also plan that for anyone whose car is registered outside of a BN postcode the above will be reversed and the fines will be doubled.
Should the above not be clear to all, don’t worry we are planning to put lots of signs up with pictures of moons, that should make it all very clear and ensure no-one has the right to complain.
And in completely unrelated news, I’m pleased to announce that the CC is planning a £2million renovation to the CC offices, installing a state of the art gymnasium, 5 star restaurant for staff and installing fine art in all senior management offices.
People responsible for this pathetic entrapment should be taken to task ,in
2021 ..over 54000 fines were issued .The ridiculous replies by pompous council staff need looking at as well .What a sad sorry lot they are !!Richie.
We enjoyed taking our 2 year old grandson to a pre Christmas morning kid’s show and were horrified to get a fine notice for the York Place scam camera in the New Year.
We have previously been put off going to Brighton by the poor parking arrangements, but thought that by pre-booking a slot we’d solved the problem! Driving back following the satnav and, we thought, signage on a dim wet December afternoon, it now seems that the Council sets ‘mantraps’. Worse still, they clearly know that this set up is trapping numerous otherwise innocent motorists who are unfamiliar with the new scheme and choose to leave this legitimised scam operation in place!
Like so many others, we’ll not be taking our grandson to Brighton again until some sense of fairness prevails. There are other choices. Perhaps the Brighton businesses that are losing out as a result of this scam may bring pressure to bear on the numpties!
Just received my £35 penalty charge through the post. I had no idea this piece of the A23 out of Brighton had become a bus ‘gate’ (whatever that is). Over the years I have become a less frequent visitor to Brighton due to its poor parking availability but this was always the road used to exit Brighton back to Crawley. So it looks like it has changed and I did not notice. No worries, I will pay the money and start working on how I am going to cost BHCC £350 worth of expense.
You must have driven past at least three signs warning you. Were you on your phone?
Just received bus gate penalty notice. Never seen any sign apart from little sign on road after i passed it. Though bus lane are pained red. F**king scam. Never going back shit hole again in life .
Open your f king eyes then, there’s more than one sign…