PARKING wardens have been accused of dishing out tickets to motorists - while leaving their own cars all day in spaces with a two-hour parking limit.
The parking service is based on Garden Street, off Broad Lane, and people working in the area say wardens regularly park for hours at a time on surrounding streets - defying restrictions.
They say wardens leave their cars parked all day while they go out in vans to tour the city and ticket other motorists who break the rules.
Lee Vaughan, an insurance broker based around the corner on Solly Street, said: “There’s a two-hour maximum waiting limit on spaces in the area but we see the parking wardens turning up for work in their own cars and leaving them here all day.
“When they patrol the streets in the area, they ticket other vehicles that overstay the limit but ignore their own and those of colleagues. It’s bare-faced cheek and a complete abuse of privilege.”
Jeff Smith, landlord of the Red House pub on Solly Street said he had spoken to the council, parking services and councillors.
He said: “I received a parking ticket because there were no free parking spaces to move to after the two-hour restriction.
“My car was ticketed but other cars which had been there just as long - and in some cases longer - had not been ticketed.
“Some of them appeared to belong to enforcement officers.
“It sparked my suspicions that the area is being used by workers at parking services as a daytime car park and that they are not being ticketed.
“This meant I could not find another free space reasonably near to my residence.
“ I feel aggrieved I am paying by way of the fine for the privilege of parking services to have a free car park along Solly Street, Garden Street and Kenyon Street.
“The obstruction of parking by private vehicles belonging to parking services’ personnel negatively affects businesses and residents in the area, not just through fines but it also prevents clients and customers from accessing the businesses.
“It is grossly unjust to issue tickets to some individuals and not others based on them being or not being workers at parking services.”
Mr Vaughan has passed photographs of the cars he says belong to wardens to bosses at parking services who have promised an investigation.
He said some wardens had claimed they were able to park in bays longer than two hours because markings had worn away or signs stating the waiting limit were damaged or missing.
Sheffield Council parking services manager Kevan Butt told Mr Vaughan: “I understand your concerns, although until you brought this issue to my attention, I was not aware that enforcement officers were parking in contravention of the restrictions.
“You will be aware by now the bay markings have been re-painted on Solly Street and I am assured by a colleague in Street Force the damaged signs will be replaced by the end of today.
“I have also issued a memorandum to all enforcement officers and office staff instructing them to park at locations where long-stay parking is permitted and that they must not use work time to move their vehicles.
“I hope the actions convince you I have taken the matter seriously and taken prompt action to resolve it.”