Lewes Forum thread

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Jason Tingley

On 22 Oct 2012 at 12:00pm boo khaki wrote:
...has spoken out in the local press, apparently he "finds it difficult to understand" why Lewes Residents (allegedly) feel the need to put fireworks in parking ticket issuing machines?
Does anyone else?
What surprises ME is that there are not more occurrences - the system is not liked, it is unfair, car parks get closed to build unnecessary police stations, there is not enough parking in town, it is forcing small business to close, it is killing our town, the machines don't even give change so they repeatedly overcharge...
Sure there are other reasons but I am off for a lie down
Is he one of those we get to vote for soon?
Won't be getting mine - can't see beyond his own nose
On 22 Oct 2012 at 12:23pm the 5-0 wrote:
On 22 Oct 2012 at 1:44pm Old Cynic wrote:
I find it difficult to understand why it doesn't happen more often!
However, when parking prices go up the 'powers that be' will straight away blame the destruction of meters as a justification.
It would be interesting to suspend parking for a year and see if it helped boost the local economy....
On 22 Oct 2012 at 1:50pm Dave wrote:
I got a ticket last Saturday at 8.30am for parking in the County Hall car park overnight.
My car was the only one in a totally empty car park of over a hundred spaces so how does ticketing me benefit anyone except the LDC coffers?
It's blatantly obvious its pure and simply an extra tax on Lewesian pockets and I can't for the life of me see how its justifiable.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 2:19pm Jason Tingley wrote:
You raise valid points but none of them provide justification or warrant damage such as this?
On 22 Oct 2012 at 2:34pm Jason Tingley wrote:
I do understand the issue, however these incidents should not be condoned or supported, whoever is responsible risks going to prison, not to mention the safety risks that this poses to the offender and others. I would be really happy to meet up & talk through the amount of time that public services spend clearing up the mess & investigating the crime.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 2:41pm Deelite wrote:
The parking scheme is mostly seen as unjust and in the main unnecessary. It is really just another way of taxing Lewes residents. Any money the scheme might generate does not get to Lewes residents but goes to ESCC where is evaporates. It is suspected that only the scheme administrators NSI and the consultants the associated Atkins make any real money from the scheme. The public consultations are organised so badly (hardly any notice, questions phrased to get the 'right' answers) that it's hard to believe it not deliberate and that they are sops only.

What you have to realise is that increasingly many people think that we are being taken for a ride by our 'elected' representatives and that they are at best inept and at worst only in it for themselves. The powerless want revenge. Blowing up parking meters is satisfying on many fronts. I for one would never break the law but have huge sympathy with those that blow the evil things up.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 2:59pm Blip wrote:
If we didn't have County Hall in Lewes we would have no parking problem. It is their cars, and those of their visitors, that use up all the spaces in the western part of the town. How many of those working at County Hall actually live in Lewes and care about it. I would hazard a guess and say "precious few". Some don't even live in this county.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 3:46pm someone else wrote:
The issue here is a clear failure of the accountability of local democracy. That makes people angry.

If Jason Tingley could propose some alternative - and less dangerous - forms of civil disobedience, I'm sure we'd all welcome them....
On 22 Oct 2012 at 4:27pm Grass wrote:
It speaks volumes that over 300 meters have been attacked in this way, yet no one has given any useful information to the authorities. Lewes is, in other respects, a pretty law abiding town, and with the police HQ here most of us will have friends or relatives in the police service. I'd generally be happy to shop anyone I suspected of a crime, but if I did know who was responsible (and to be clear, I have no idea) I think I might make an exception in this particular case. As Someone Else says, the Lewes parking scheme lacks all democratic accountability, and most of us see it as bad for the town.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 4:28pm Ed Can Do wrote:
Although I've never blown up a parking meter myself, I can understand why those who do do so. It's just a shame that they choose to only do it this time of year and allow the media to blame it on bonfire.

There are plenty of equally effective and less dangerous ways to ruin a parking meter. Painting over the solar panels on the top will do the trick, as will squirting sealant into the coin slot, neither of which will cause any passers-by to get hit by shrapnel. Even gonig round with stickers saying "Out of order" and pasting them over the coin slots can cause immense confusion amongst the ranks of the blue meanies.

Jason clearly has a dim view of the intelligence of people doing this though because I can't imagine anyone doing this to be silly enough to either do it while someone else is walking past or stand in the way of the blast.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 4:45pm brixtonbelle wrote:
Sorry - who is Jason Tingley ?
On 22 Oct 2012 at 4:53pm Southover Queen wrote:
Sussex Police District Commander for Lewes, apparently.

Jason, I'd agree with those who say that they're normally the most law abiding of people but have great sympathy for this. ESCC take absolutely no notice of what the residents of Lewes want and in fact seem sometimes to take the contrary view just for the fun of it. So I bet I'm not alone in smothering a laugh when I hear of another parking meter biting the proverbial.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 5:11pm Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
Some great alternatives there, Ed Can Do!

I think the fact that there have been 300+ ticket machines explosively disabled, but no reported injuries, might be a sign that the people doing this are actually being quite careful about when and how they do it. I also think it's questionable whether the resources devoted to investigating what is, after all, an act of criminal damage, are justified. A friend thought there'd been a murder when he saw a white "scene of crime" tent at the corner of the magistrates' court car park a few years ago. It turned out to be another blown-up ticket machine.

I'm sure the people in the Pells area whose cars seem to get vandalised with monotonous regularity would like the same level of investigation carried out into THAT criminal damage.

I got chatting to a very posh and respectable elderly lady in the parking shop a few years ago. We were both moaning about the parking scheme and over-zealousness of wardens and she said that when even law-abiding citizens like her felt that blowing up the machines was justified, it was time to abandon the scheme. She then added that she had been a magistrate for some years!

The people of Lewes feel that their views are being disregarded by unaccountable politicians and it therefore follows that the damaging of the machines is considered more akin to an act of civil disobedience than one of wanton vandalism. After all, other street furniture doesn't get blown up.

Perhaps Jason (local police commander, BB) would like to direct his concerns re the cost of investigating such actions to the County and District councils. If they were to abandon the scheme, I'm sure the incidents would stop.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 5:54pm No Pot Pourri wrote:
When people do not see democracy to be working, they will tend to take the law into their own hands.
In this instance a very large number of people are supportive of the criminal damage to parking meters, as the scheme the meters are used to support is seen as unfair and undemocratic.
Civil disobedience is nothing new and the fact that those undertaking these acts have such wide support suggests that they just might be in the right.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 7:44pm I don't live in Lewes... wrote:
Amazed to hear that residents in the Pells area are still being subjected to regular car vandalism as that was a real pain when I left the area over 8 years ago. Still, it's good to know that Jason can step up patrols in an attempt to stop vandalised meters. That should get the public on his side.
I can already hear the locals clapping and dancing in the streets chanting his name.

On 22 Oct 2012 at 8:39pm Local wrote:
Seems to me that Jason is a plonker. There's wonderful evidence on this thread of how Lewes views this hilarious local initiative. Long may it continue.
On 22 Oct 2012 at 9:40pm Extra wrote:
I thought he was a fictitious character in the Peter James crime novels.....
On 22 Oct 2012 at 10:10pm Deelite wrote:
Jason Tingley is not very interesting:

Check it out here »
On 22 Oct 2012 at 10:53pm the old mayor wrote:
I know who Jason Tingley is too.
He IS a fictional character in Peter James's novels !!
On 22 Oct 2012 at 11:30pm Who cares wrote:
who cares what Jason Tingley thinks anyway, he is about as in touch with Lewes as the idiots that work under him are. It speaks volumes for his credentials when he allows himself to be a character in the joke novels of Peter James.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 6:39am Jason Tingley wrote:
I have read the posts with interest (the sensible ones in any case). Firstly I am in touch enough to agree that the vast majority of Lewes residents are law abiding. I am not politically influenced on this issue and as a Hove resident (with parking restrictions where I live) I can understand why residents would democratically seek to influence what local parking restrictions are in place. However I do not apologise for investigating these incidents and reiterate that these are your public services being diverted from other areas which is why I am surprised that some are encouraging and supporting this activity in relation to the parking meters.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 8:28am Deelite wrote:
It's a question of police resources then? Many in Lewes see investigating the destruction of parking meters as much less important than sorting out ongoing problems with vehicle vandalism at Pells and Neville and the use of fireworks on the street. Spend less money investigating things that hardly anyone here thinks matters and more on police on the streets at night (on foot, or bicycle) and bonus might be respect from Lewes citizens for the powers that be, and less inclination to have any support for law breakers. At the moment the impositon of a parking scheme run by the gestapo and lack of police time spent on matters important to residents does law and order and respect for authority no good at all? and we know where that leads in the end.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 8:38am Zebedee wrote:
The Lewes and Hove parking issues cannot be compared. Lewes does not have hundreds of multi-storied terraced houses that have been indiscriminately converted into thousands of small flats with no accommodation made for the extra parking that would be required.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 9:07am I dont live in lewes... wrote:
To hold the post that you do makes you a bright bunnie. However, to say " I am surprised that some are encouraging and supporting this activity in relation to the parking meters." Indicates that you haven't grasped the deep long term community dislike to the parking scheme and its day to day running that exists.
Lewes is not a lawless town and with few exceptions most support the police unreservedly; it really must be a nightmare of a job and those on the front line deserve admiration, respect, to be well paid and a medal. I would imagine that community support with regard to the thorny issue of parking meter demise would vary between muted and zero. Catching the culprits is unlikely to resolve the problem and may exacerbate it which is something you may consider when allocating precious resources. The solution is to be found within the bowels of the Local Authorities who seem intent on putting you between a rock and a hard place.
On the one hand you have to be seen to be "On Message" to various authorities and on the other you'll be aware of the importance of community support.
God speed.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 11:43am king cnut wrote:
In Brighton 'profits' from the parking scheme support subsidised bus travel and other initiatives (bus travel gets a whopping £9million from the scheme). Does Lewes get anything back from this scheme? Just asking like.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 11:46am Ed Can Do wrote:
I suppose actually that it'll be down to the new police commisioner as to whether the cops waste any more time chasing parking machine vandals or concentrate on stuff that people in town actually care about like car vandalism and anti-social behavious on a Friday night. I'd say the chances of any of the candidates for the post coming out and actually stating that as policy are next to zero though.

I'd agree though that should you by some miracle actually catch someone doing this and are stupid enough to charge them with anything, you're only going to encourage more people to do it. The vast majority of people in Lewes are law-abiding and supportive of the police, except when it comes to parking meter destruction and bonfire, plus pretty much everyone I know ignores the laws about possession of a class c controlled drug. I think people get frustrated when they see any resources at all deployed to catch un-catchable machine vandals when you never, ever see a copper in obvious crime hotspots like at the Pells on a Friday night.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 11:49am Blip wrote:
It's right! Lewes people are mainly law-abiding. But we have a reputation for "bloody-mindedness" when we honestly feel the occasion demands it. As they say of Sussex people generally: "We won't be druv".
Remember what they say of "bad" laws: if it is unacceptable or unenforceable it is a bad law and should be dropped.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:04pm Jason Tingley wrote:
Your posts have certainly gone some way to make me understand the history behind this and the depth of feeling. The link to ASB and specifically The Pells is one that I am very aware of as although Lewes is a low crime area, we certainly do suffer sporadic spates of vandalism and car crime. This is not lost on the local Neighbourhood Policing Team nor I and we do get a sense of your frustration. We have recently charged one young man with a number of car crime incidents around The Pells and local officers worked really hard to gather the evidence needed on 13 offences. They really do take it personally and do all we can continiue to do is deliver the best possible service (particularly in an extraordinary year such as this has been).
As a public servant I am responsible for dealing with crimes & incidents and making Lewes as safe as I possibly can and I wont apologise for my stance on damage to the parking meters. However the debate is an extremely interesting one and I respect the views on all sides just not the specific response to try and influence change.
On a lighter note I have never been referred to either a 'plonker' nor a 'bright bunnie' (as I have on these posts) both of which are references at opposite ends of the spectrum but nevertheless go to show that they are always differing views.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:09pm Jason Tingley wrote:
In response to Phil's balanced comments ..... policing may appear to be a nighmare of a job but it certainly isnt as far as I am concerned. I absolutely love my job and have also been heartened by the community's wish to be heard on many issues in Lewes (& wider Lewes District)... sometimes which isn't always what one would wish to hear but nonetheless part of my job is to listen.
Best wishes
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:15pm bonfire boy wrote:
A question for Chief Inspector Tingley: we understand, from our Societies, that the police will enforce a zero tolerance policy on drop-downs on the 5th. Just supposing, entirely hypothetically, that 1,500 bonfire boys and girls choose to ignore their Societies' advice and continue the tradition anyway. How will you police that? Exemplary arrests? Stop the processions?
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:15pm Deelite wrote:
King cnut. When the Lewes Parking Scheme was first introduced a sweetener was included that the profits would be used to benefit the town Lewes. Some of the more worthy Councillors (including the redoubtable Merlin Millner) have asked ESCC what the money is being used for, but have met with stone-walling.

Just another in a long line of broken promises and cynical cons by Tory led East Sussex County Council.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:27pm Jason Tingley wrote:
Bonfire Boy. Everyones responsibility is to make this years event as safe as we possibly can which is why the advice on drop downs has been discussed and negotiated throughout the planning stages for this year. It isnt wise to comment on hypothetical scenarios.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:27pm Cuban Raft Rider wrote:
You can not get rid of the scheme altogether as commuters that are forced to pay £800 per year will naturally seek out the cost effective alternative.
Hows about ESCC moving out of town to an industrial estate and hand over the properties they occupy to be converted into low rent, short term social housing.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:29pm bonfire boy wrote:
That's a fascinating interpretation of the meaning of 'negotiated' there, Jason.
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:36pm Trolly Dolly wrote:
Jason, did you used to go out with a girl called Annette, who was a flight attendant?
On 23 Oct 2012 at 12:36pm Cilla wrote:
Why is a copper on here ! He should look you right between the eyes , surprise surprise

This thread has reached its limit now
Why not start another one


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