Mods making Quadrophenia homage threatened with parking tickets
Mods say traffic wardens are ruining one of their long-standing traditions by threatening them with parking tickets.
For years mods have stopped at "Quad Alley" in East Street, Brighton, which features in the cult film Quadrophenia.
They park their gleaming scooters and pose for pictures with tourists.
Fans from around the world visit the street to take in the history, often visiting the clothes shop next door, also called Quadrophenia Alley.
But mods say the innocent activity is now being ruined by parking enforcement officers.
Ollie Wilson, from Hove, said he was visiting the alley and shop on Sunday morning with fellow mod Jim Deans.
As usual Ollie was on his scooter, a Vespa PX125, but moments later he was challenged by a traffic warden.
Ollie said he was threatened with a parking ticket and was given five minutes to leave the area. His scooter was parked on the pavement outside Quadrophenia Alley.
Ollie said: "The mods have been going down to Quadrophenia Alley for decades, and this is the first time we’ve been approached by parking enforcers."
He claims there has been a long-standing agreement between the parking wardens and the mods, who he said "provide a major boost to the local economy" when they visit the area.
The mods have been a feature of Brighton's motoring culture for the last 60 years, scootering around Brighton and Hove in their Vespas and Lambrettas.
Cult film Quadrophenia was filmed in and around the city in 1979, depicting the clashes between the mods and rockers on August bank holidays.
One memorable scene was shot in Quadrophenia Alley.
East Street is closed to motor vehicles between 11am and 7pm on weekends.
Ollie accused Brighton and Hove City Council of "destroying our heritage and running contrary to custom and tradition".
He has started a campaign to "Free Quad Alley" of "harassment" from parking wardens, saying the mods are "exercising their democratic right to spend time with their beautiful scooters, at a place in Brighton that is very special to them".
Paul Bone, director of clothes shop Quadrophenia Alley, said: "The mods create a spectacle outside the shop. It creates interest and a nice atmosphere.
"Brighton is the spiritual home of mods."
There are fears the enforcement might deter mods from visiting the area in the future.
The August bank holiday traditionally still sees hundreds of mods descend on the city for a weekend of scooters and music.
Ollie said: "What will happen then? Are attendants going to be going around, issuing hundreds of tickets?
"It is a dangerous precedent to set."
Ollie, who also started the campaign to reopen Madeira Drive during the height of the pandemic after it was closed to promote social distancing, said: "I hope to see more and more mods and scooterists there every weekend just to make a point that we won't be driven away by the philistine council."
A council spokesman said: “Our parking rules exist to ensure the safety of both pedestrians and motorists, keep traffic flowing as freely as possible and manage the huge demand for parking across the city.
“There has never been an exemption to these rules for mod scooters or any other vehicles.
“The role of our contractor’s parking staff is to enforce these rules. They are not paid on a commission basis.”