Islington motorcycle parking charges to be challenged in cabinet meeting

Motorcycle parking charges introduced in February are set to be disputed by two London-based motorcycling groups in a cabinet meeting.

motorcycle parking

Motorcycle parking charges that were introduced in Islington earlier this year in February will be opposed in an upcoming Islington Council cabinet meeting by both the Greater London Motorcycle Action Group and Save London Motorcycling.

The cabinet meeting is set to take place later today (13 July 2023) at 18:30, and will see representatives of both groups demanding that the motorcycle parking charges be permanently removed.

A MAG spokesperson, who is also a resident in Islington, said: “The way Islington [Council] has behaved is absolutely outrageous. They brought in these charges without consultation or warning, resulting in thousands of people being unfairly fined in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis.

"They still haven’t given a public apology for the way they have treated their residents and still haven’t confirmed when they will pay back the fines. They are currently refusing to meet with motorcyclists. Which is why we are attending the council meeting on 13 July to demand answers to our questions on the charges.”

Previous campaigning by both the Greater London Motorcycle Action Group (GLMAG) and Save London Motorcycling (SLMC) on the matter of the parking charges in Islington saw the charges paused until 17 July 2023, and the rates of the charges reduced. The costs (as of 13 July 2023) for a non-resident motorcycle parking permit in Islington are shown in the table below.

Permit lengthCost for petrol motorcyclesCost for electric motorcycles 
One day£1£0.50
One week£4£2
One month£14£7
Three months£35£17.50
One year£110


For Islington residents, the cost for a combustion motorcycle parking permit is £60.20, and for a permit for an electric bike it is £30.60.

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) has also said that it is taking particular opposition to the charging of zero-emission electric motorcycles. Islington Council's argument for charging electric bikes for parking is that it should encourage more people to use active forms of transport - such as cycling - or walking.

This article was originally published on 23 March 2023, and was updated with the above text on 13 July 2023. The original article can be read below.

The Motorcycle Action Group has announced that it will be meeting with Islington Borough Council over the introduction of motorcycle parking charges in the borough.

Back at the beginning of February, the Islington Borough Council introduced a new £1 parking charge for motorcycles parking in the borough’s dedicated motorcycle parking bays, which it said was a change to existing parking charges.

That claim, the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) says, allowed the Council to bypass public consultation on the introduction of the £1 motorcycle parking charge. 

However, MAG says the Council’s claim, that the introduction of the £1 charge for motorcycles is an evolution of existing charges, is in fact false, since it was previously free to park in Islington’s motorcycle parking bays. Parking outside the motorcycle bays necessitated a resident’s permit, which has been unchanged since the introduction of the £1 charge.

MAG says that there was no contact from Islington Borough Council to any motorcycling organisations about the new charges before they were introduced, and that there was no public notification from the Council of its intention to begin charging for motorcycle parking.

Opposition to Hackney Council’s motorcycle parking charges, which were at one point set to cost powered two-wheeler owners up to £14,000 per year, has been led by the Greater London Motorcycle Action Group (GLMAG), which has campaigned alongside Save London Motorcycling (SLMC) to reduce the parking charges for solo motorcycle bays, planned by Hackney Council, from around £60 per day to £10.

However, resident and business permit charges have not changed under Hackney’s most-recent proposals (which are set to be presented for approval on 27 March), and SLMC says it was not consulted on the changes despite assurances from Hackney Council that it would consult the motorcycling campaign group before such changes were put forward.

GLMAG has confirmed a meeting is scheduled between itself and Islington Borough Council regarding the Islington £1 charge for next Monday (27 March 2023), the same day as the Hackney proposals are set to be put forward for approval.

A statement from a GLMAG spokesperson highlights the distrust between motorcycle groups and local governments, and the feeling that the opposition faced by Hackney Council has directly influenced the path taken in Islington. They said: “This is a clear attempt by the council to bypass democratic scrutiny. They have seen what happened in Hackney and wanted to avoid the uproar. This is a sign that our campaigning is working, but we need to be on the lookout for other councils doing the same.  Cock-up or conspiracy?  Either way it’s a totally unacceptable way for a democratic organisation to behave, and it goes against all democratic norms. No other council has taken such an underhand approach.”

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