MORE councils in the North East have been criticised for handing out more than 100 parking tickets to runners and spectators of the Great North Run.
The region’s councils issued 108 tickets to cars during the event which saw 54,000 runners complete the 13.1-mile route from Newcastle to South Shields, and thousands more turn up to watch.
Newcastle City Council issued 22 tickets, Gateshead Council 32, North Tyneside Council 31 and South Tyneside Council 23 on Sunday.
The authorities have come under fire for fining people who took part in the region’s biggest charity event.
One person who received a ticket is Kavan Crewf , who watched son Daniel, 34, run in the event.
The 63-year-old parked his Volkswagen Polo on the North Shields riverside before catching the ferry over to South Shields to watch the final leg of the race. But when he returned, he discovered his car and many others in the same street had been given a parking ticket.
Mr Crewf, from Hazlerigg, North Tyneside, said: “I think it’s out of order for the council to give people parking tickets when they’ve travelled from around the country to watch a magnificent charity event which raises money for good causes.
“There was absolutely nowhere to park, and since there was loads of cars parked on the street I thought it would be all right. But I was horrified when I returned. I just found it disgraceful that councils would use the opportunity of the Great North Run to make thousands of pounds.”
Mr Crewf said his niece, Helen Crewf, 33, who travelled up from Manchester to watch the event, also received a ticket.
Councils last night defended their actions, saying they would consider appeals from any of the motorists involved. A North Tyneside Council spokesperson said: “North Tyneside Council’s priority is the safety of residents and visitors. Permanent parking restrictions, such as double yellow lines, are in place to ensure safe movement of traffic and the safety of pedestrians, and road users should be aware that double yellow lines mean no parking at all times. Alternative safe parking provision was available further along the Fish Quay area.”
South Tyneside Council said it only issued tickets “where we had to”, in order to keep the route clear for emergency vehicles. Newcastle City Council said it would consider appeals from motorists.
Dave Christer, head of facilities management at Gateshead Council, said: “Parking enforcement on the day of the Great North Run was exactly as it would be for any other Sunday of the year.”