Traffic wardens in one area of Kent have ditched their usual controversial reputation of bringing misery to drivers and are instead helping people during the coronavirus crisis.
Panic-buying and the lockdown has made it hard for some vulnerable people to get the supplies they need, particularly those who have been told to self-isolate at home for months and are reliant on others to ensure they have enough food.
So traffic wardens with Sevenoaks District Council have started delivering essential food boxes to residents who need them.
Councillor Lesley Dyball said: “In these uncertain times, we are taking on new roles to support older and vulnerable residents who cannot leave the house during the coronavirus outbreak.
“I am really proud that our traffic wardens have stepped up to provide a lifeline to those in greatest need.”
This does not mean parking in the district will go unmonitored, however, with the wardens continuing to make limited patrols.
This is to ensure drivers park safely and responsibly, keeping traffic flowing and ensuring access for emergency vehicles.
Residents who need help with their shopping, picking up prescriptions, walking the dog or posting their mail or would like a friendly chat over the phone can sign up to the council’s Care for our Community scheme.
To register, visit www.sevenoaks.gov.uk/requesthelp or call 01732 227000.
AA president Edmund King said: “It is great that these parking attendants are helping the vulnerable during this crisis. We know that they are sometimes given a hard time for just doing their job but these acts of kindness will be remembered. As traffic is down almost 80% in places it is great to see them redeployed for the greater good.
“Likewise at the AA we are adapting and have offered a free breakdown service for all 1.5 million NHS employees and our patrols are also assisting ambulance services in London, East of England and the West Midlands to get more ambulances on the roads to save lives.”