You can’t beat a wonderful BBC nature documentary. It seems that for years we’ve all been educated and entertained by David Attenborough and the talented cameramen and women who have given us an insight into the animal kingdom. From the blackbird to the blue whale we have learned about how species survive or, in some cases, how perilous their existence can be.
The role of the seasons in nature has been a mainstay and something I think about when it comes to patterns of life here in Kensington and Chelsea. And just as migratory birds, like swifts and swallows, return to our shores for the summer, so do beasts of an entirely different order. But expect no thrilling aerial displays from these visitors because I’m talking about the return of the supercar.
The waterhole they tend to return to is Knightsbridge and in the past you couldn’t miss them. This year however we have taken steps to curtail the growl from their huge engines and also to restrict how and where they can parade. Like a rare bird attracts twitchers from all over the country these cars draw legions of admirers to the area in the hope of sighting an impressive Ferrari, Lamborghini or McLaren and perhaps hearing the decibel level go up if the driver switches to sports mode which, believe me, sounds very loud.
Since they were last displaying for us we have introduced something called a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO). This means that drivers of any vehicles in the Knightsbridge area can be fined for: revving engines, repeated sudden or rapid acceleration, racing, leaving the engine running while parked, performing stunts, sounding horns, playing music, using offensive language and/or intimidating behaviour towards others, and causing obstruction on a public highway, including driving in convoy.
Anyone who falls foul of the PSPO will face a fine of between £100 and £1,000 for each offence. The PSPO is enforced between noon and 6am and fines can be issued by Council officers or the police. In the last few months 25 fixed penalty notices have been issued.
So if you live in Knightsbridge and are troubled by one of these impressive, but often noisy or antisocial, vehicles doing one or other of the above please call the Council on 020 7361 3002 or email email@example.com with the following information: Where did the breach occur? What time did the breach occur? Which of the criteria from the PSPO were breached? What was the make, model and colour of the vehicle? What is the vehicle registration number? If possible can you provide a description of the driver or passengers? And are you prepared to provide a witness statement? (We cannot pursue a case unless this is provided).
It’s important to note that this order can be applied to all classes of vehicle and not just supercars. So, even lesser-spotted Honda Jazz divers, like me, have to drive considerately.
To find out the area the PSPO is enforced in and more information, go to www.rbkc.gov.uk/pspo