THE latest development in the saga of parking enforcement in Hambleton involves a resident in Northallerton, who followed instructions from the county council to use his 2016 residents’ parking permit in January 2017, only to receive a ticket from a parking warden for his efforts.

It was quashed when he appealed, but it followed on from the two penalty notices he had received when his permit holder became unsticky and fell from his windscreen in warm weather.

The first time he was excused, the second time he wasn’t, because he couldn’t “use the same excuse twice”.

While everyone understands the need for rules and regulation so the town and its parking works for everyone, enforcement seems to be carried out in Hambleton with a zeal that is something to behold.

Last year we ran a story about parking wardens patrolling Northallerton’s virtually deserted High Street at night.

It was not an exercise in vain – they found a woman who had broken down and parked on yellow lines outside her shop on a cold winter’s night, while she waited inside for a breakdown vehicle. Her explanation fell on deaf ears; she got a ticket.

It seems parking enforcement in Hambleton has risen to an omnipotent power that is beyond the pleas of mere mortal motorists who have broken down, lingered too long on an empty high street, or lost the stick on their parking permit holder. Scarborough Borough Council – which manages parking enforcement – protests that illegal parking is illegal parking, no matter how empty the High Street.

In the grand scheme of things draconian parking fines don’t register up there with modernday tragedies. They just make you raise your eyes to the heavens, wipe out a good mood and possibly kick a couple of your car tyres.

But let’s not let the residents and visitors who keep Hambleton’s towns thriving have a good day turned into a bad one.