Storm in a teacup as I'm sure it'll turn out to be, I whipped up a lot of response on Facebook this week when I spotted this on the road outside our house. As I explained...
First world problems. Just drove to the shops and was delighted to find the space I'd left was there when I came back.
With a cone in it.
So, what do I do? Move the cone and take my space back? Or respect the thought that someone might have a genuine medical emergency and really needs that space?
I have done the latter. I'm currently on the double yellow line with a "local resident waiting for a space, please don't ticket" sign in the windscreen. Keeping an eye on that coned spot. If it turns out it's taken by someone who really needed the space, I'll feel like a good citizen who did the right thing.
If it turns out to be someone who just greedily nabbed and coned the space for their own selfishness, I shall never respect another traffic cone in a parking space again. That's fair isn't it?
I got a lot of responses on both my Facebook timeline and Hello Clevedon, here are just a few...
I’d move it. I doubt a traffic warden would be at all sympathetic to your sign and medical emergencies don’t usually leave enough time to plan to go out and put out a cone. They’re of no legal authority and you’ve as much right to park there as whoever put it there. - Steve
It'll just be someone with a sense of entitlement. - Other Steve
Putting things like cones or wheelie bins on the street to block out space without permission is an offence under the Highways Act, and anyone caught could be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100. - Hello Clevedon
Move it, it's not a legal cone. Its basically an unlawful obstruction. Only police cones are a legal requirement. - Dave
I work in car Insurance. If your car is insured and there is a legit gap, you can’t stop someone parking in a certain spot. Unless you have a drop kerb and they are blocking your drive. Or private property. I would have removed the cone and parked. End of. - Sim
Absolutely right what hello Clevedon said I had same issue with a neighbour who used to do this it back fired on him . Pay car tax park where you like . - Sarah
Move the cone.
Public road and you have a right to park. If it's an emergency they can park on double yellows and explain the situation to the authorities if need be. - Jonathan
Yeah move it ....no dibs on parking....the nerve of some people - Gary
The wardens are instructed not to read notes in the window. Move the cone you have a right to park on any unrestricted street in the UK - Jon
You really shouldn't get out more - Declan
Phone Cone-stabulary! - Neil
Walk - Paul
Bugger the cone. I would've popped it back on the pavement and parked. It's one step up from Wally's who put their bins out as though that is some international signal of ownership. - Graeme
We’ve got two people that do that who live near a primary school. It’s very sad and pathetic - Alice
We have turned a bit into a society which has an underlying feeling of 'entitlement' - perhaps this exemplifies this trend. Mercedes owners included presumably. - Dave
Take a photo of the cone before you remove it into safe keeping. Leave a printed image behind with a ransom note and a PO Box number for the payment if the owner ever wants to see it again. Should there be any delay you could cut out the shape of a little finger with a scalpel and leave it on the kerb side.…………I have been in quarantine for a while now so I don’t know if this is a film!!!!!! - Paul
When you see it again, put it in your own boot! He’s knicked it anyway, so it’s not his property! - Ian
I updated the story with the news that...
UPDATE: A car has come and taken the space, a big black Mercedes. And I suspect it is the cone-culprit himself. Why do I think that? Because the cone has now disappeared! (My bet is it's in his boot. If I see that cone again I shall move it, but not until I've secretly marked it with marker pen so we'll know it's his if he tries it again.)
Nice plan Sherlock Cones! - Bruce
Then, rather ominously, this post came on my timeline...
Which, if genuine, is quite worrying because the man who posted it is a Krav Maga self defence instructor? Is everyone so keen on me moving his cone now? (Actually, yes, you probably are, you sadistic lot.)
I'm sure that's the last we'll hear of the story.
Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries & art centres - AND NOW ONLINE VIA ZOOM. email for details. His graphic novels Findlay Macbeth and The Prince Of Denmark Street are available on Amazon. Follow Kev on Facebook, Twitter. Promo video here.