“Wacky racers” return to Studland and a Mercedes gets towed away at Sandbanks

In Studland, parked cars causing chaos got parking tickets but in Sandbanks, under new powers, the council removed illegally parked vehicles on a tow truck.

With hot weather forecast and despite police warnings not to flock to the beaches, visitors descended on Studland and Sandbanks causing a parking nightmare.


Along Ferry Road in Studland, there were so many parked vehicles narrowing the road, that the buses were delayed, as they struggled to get through.

Crowds on Studland Beach
Donald Mack

Knoll Beach at Studland was packed by midday

“‘Park where you like’ attitude!”

Purbeck Police said:

“Today saw the return of the Wacky Racers to Studland with the ‘park where you like’ attitude! Fortunately I had restocked my ticket books since last time and got busy practicing my signature whilst issuing some financial education to the worst offenders. This was in addition to the many, many tickets handed out by the council’s parking attendants.”

A crowded Studland beach
Donald Mack

The view from Knoll Beach around to South Beach in Studland

All the vehicles removed get a set fine of £150

Over on the other side of Poole Harbour, new removal powers introduced in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole were used for the first time to tow away parked vehicles that were causing an obstruction. All the vehicles removed get a set fine of £150 and face up to £20 a day storage fee for every 24 hours their car is left before being collected.

“A result of the significant volume of illegally parked cars”

BCP Councillor Andy Hadley, Portfolio holder for transport and infrastructure, said:

“This is a decision not taken lightly but as a result of the significant volume of illegally parked cars experienced, particularly at Sandbanks and Bournemouth seafront; we have no choice but to take action. I hope we rarely have to use the power and people instead choose to park responsibly but everyone should be aware we now have this option at our disposal if they choose otherwise.”

This Mercedes car was filmed by Katrina Bailey being put onto a tow truck in Sandbanks


Still gridlock at Sandbanks at around 5 pm

Despite the tougher measures, there was still gridlock at Sandbanks at around 5 pm for about an hour and a half, as everyone started to go home when the sun went in and it turned drizzly.

This caused problems for the Sandbanks Ferry who posted this message on their Facebook page:

“16:48: We are currently experiencing difficulties due to queuing traffic on the Poole side, meaning that currently we are only able to take half loads from Studland to Sandbanks, as there is insufficient space to unload on the slipway.”

Busy Swanage Beach
Gill Richards

Back in Swanage, the beach was also packed

A hot and tiring day

Dorset Council at the end of a hot and tiring day, which also saw traffic queues from Sandford, through Corfe Castle and down to Swanage, posted this warning to motorists:

“We’ve had a lot of visitors to Dorset today, so make sure you are prepared for your journey home. Check transport timetables and traffic routes for timings and delays. If you are in a car:

  • Be prepared to sit in traffic.
  • Make sure you have plenty of water with you.
  • Have face coverings handy if you need to use shops for supplies”

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