Blog Post

Barrister loses motorcycle parking challenge

A barrister who claimed his motorcycle was immune to parking tickets because its wheels did not touch the ground was told to pay up today by the Court of Appeal.

Clive Wolman, a barrister at 11 Stone Buildings and former financial journalist, is now liable for 100 parking tickets and legal costs after the appeal judges said his interpretation of the word “on” emphasised the “unreality” of his argument.

Mr Wolman had claimed that when he parked his 500cc Suzuki on the pavement outside his home in Duncan Terrace in Islington, north London, and at his office in Chancery Lane in the City, he was not subject to parking regulations because the bike balanced on its centre stand with both wheels off the ground. (Hahahaha… have you ever seen a bike balancing on JUST it’s centre stand?)

He began his legal battle in May 2005 against two local authorities claiming damages for wrongful interference with his motorcycle and harassment.

The ruling went against him so he asked the Court of Appeal to overturn the decision of the County Court judge who, he said, had misinterpreted the meaning of “on”.

Lord Justice Moore-Bick, giving the court’s ruling, said: “When parked in Chancery Lane in the manner I have described, his motorcycle can quite properly be said to be parked on the pavement, even if neither wheel is directly in contact with it.”

Although the judges allowed the appeal because Deputy Circuit Judge Robin Laurie’s declaration on the law against parking was too wide, they substituted a declaration that by parking the motorcycle on its stand on the pavement with its body and one or both wheels on or over the pavement, Mr Wolman was in contravention of the parking laws.

Link: London Times Online

Thx to Dirk for this news item!