Ulez expansion: We won’t put in your cameras, Harrow council tells London mayor Sadiq Khan

A London borough has said it will not co-operate with Transport for London in installing ultra low emission zone cameras in its area.

The Ulez scheme is due to be expanded across the capital in August, meaning the drivers of older, more polluting cars will have to pay £12.50 a day to use their vehicles.

But Mayor Sadiq Khan was on Wednesday facing a backlash against the plans that he argues will result in cleaner air for five million Londoners.

The Ulez was launched in central London in 2019 to reduce air pollution and expanding it to the suburbs requires installing 2,750 enforcement cameras that read number plates to check non-compliant vehicles.

A spokesman for Conservative-run Harrow said that the borough “will not be co-operating with TfL” in putting up cameras, adding “the evidence that Ulez will work is not there”.

It comes as the borough announced it will offer one-hour free parking in all of its council-owned car parks at a cost of £1million a year.

Sutton Council has also confirmed it will block the installation of the CCTV for the Ulez, arguing it will negatively impact small business owners and key workers.

Hillingdon, Bexley and Bromley councils have also hit out at the scheme.

In a joint statement the boroughs said: “Until we have seen compelling evidence to the contrary, it remains our position that this scheme will not translate successfully to outer London and the negative impact to local households and economies will far outweigh the negligible air quality benefits.”

TfL commissioner Andy Lord has previous warned that blocking the cameras needed for the Ulez to operate is counter-productive.

He said it could turn boroughs without enforcement into “rat runs” for the most polluting vehicles.

“If boroughs refuse to engage and we get into a delay in one area, the risk is that those boroughs see increased traffic,” he added.

It comes as Mr Khan confirmed a double whammy of record transport fare rises on Wednesday.

Tube and bus fares will increase by an average of 5.9 per cent – the biggest hike for more than a decade – while the mayor’s share of council tax bills will jump by 9.7 per cent, the biggest rise for 20 years.

For the second successive year, bus fares will rise 10p – taking them to £1.75 from March 5.

The daily and weekly cap on pay-as-you-go Tube fares will increase by up to 6.7 per cent, depending on how many zones are travelled.