Parking and the Transport (Scotland) Act 2019

Part 6 of the Transport (Scotland) Act 2019 introduced the statutory framework for a national ban on pavement parking, double parking and parking at dropped kerbs to make it easier for local authorities to ensure our pavements and roads are safer and more accessible to all.

Pavement, Dropped Kerb and Double Parking National Prohibitions

In 2019 the Scottish Parliament passed the Transport (Scotland) Act 2019 which included powers to introduce three new parking prohibitions nationally. These ban parking on pavements, at dropped kerbs at known crossing places and also double parking.

All of the secondary legislation has now been put in place give local authorities the powers they require to enforce these new parking offences. Subject to Parliamentary approval, local authorities will be able to issue penalty charge notices from 11 December 2023. The penalty level is set at £100 although this does reduce to £50 if paid within 14 days, some exemptions apply to the pavement parking ban and we have set out below how these will work:

Pavement Parking Exemptions

There are some exemptions in place, such as:

  • To allow for the normal operation of the emergency services, or medical practitioners in emergency situations
  • To allow the response to an emergency or accident
  • To allow for certain deliveries and collections
  • Vehicles used for undertaking works on roads or removal of obstructions

These exceptions are only valid if specific criteria is met and there is no other reasonable parking available. Full details of the exceptions are contained within the 2019 Act.

Local Authority Exemptions

The Local Authorities in Scotland have powers to exempt certain areas of pavement from the national ban, should they feel it necessary. 

A public consultation was held on the exemption procedures local authorities must follow if they wish to make such exemptions and a copy of that consultation and the associated analysis report can be found here:

In general, local authorities can consider an exemption where one of two criteria are met. 

An area of pavement can only be considered for exemption if:

  • its layout or character would allow for a width of 1.5 metres of the footway to remain unobstructed when any part of a vehicle is parked on it, or
  • the layout or character of the carriageway associated with the footway is such that the passage of an emergency vehicle would be impeded by the presence of a vehicle parked on the carriageway.

Where an exemption has been put in place the area subject to the exemption must be clearly signed and marked so that members of the public understand that they are allowed to park on that area of pavement.

Guidance has been issued to local authorities on the exemption process. If you would like to read a copy of the guidance, please email

Frequently asked questions

Why are these prohibitions necessary?

Prohibitions for pavement parking, double parking and parking at dropped kerbs were introduced by the Transport (Scotland) Act 2019 and are aimed at promoting, supporting and advancing the rights of pedestrians to ensure that our pavements and roads are accessible for all. The Act was debated at length in the Scottish Parliament and the national prohibition on pavement parking received unanimous cross party support. There have also been a number of public consultations regarding the pavement parking prohibition and the secondary regulations which are required to enforce the prohibition.

How do I know if a street has been exempt from the prohibitions?

Local authorities in Scotland have powers to exempt certain areas of pavement from the national ban, should they feel it necessary and if certain criteria are met. Further information on exemption criteria can be found above. If a local authority has deemed an area to be exempt from the prohibitions, appropriate signs and lines are required to be installed showing that parking on the pavement is permitted.

Can my street be exempt from the prohibitions?

Exemptions can only be applied if certain criteria are met, details on this criteria can be found above. The decision over whether a certain area can be exempt ultimately lies with the relevant local authority, if you believe your street meets the criteria for an exemption, you may wish to contact your local authority.

How do I report vehicles parked in contravention of these prohibitions?

From 11 December 2023, local authorities have the tools they require to enforce the parking prohibitions by issuing a Penalty Charge Notice of £100 (reduced to £50 if paid within 14 days). However, each local authority is undertaking work to determine how best to enforce these prohibitions in their areas. Any reports of those in contraventions of the prohibitions should be made to the relevant local authority.