Case Study – Wokingham Borough Council

Wokingham Borough Council is a unitary authority comprising seventeen parishes and towns, each with a different character. The area has experienced the highest rate of business growth in the UK over the past 15 years and its strong regional economy is dominated by the IT, communications and pharmaceutical sectors.

NSL had established a longstanding relationship with the council having provided parking enforcement services for car parks across the borough for many years. After winning a competitive tender in 2017, these services now include:

• On and off-street parking enforcement
• First line maintenance support for all pay and display terminals
• Cash collection
• Notice processing including pre and post notice to owners
• IVR and web-based payments of penalty charge notices
• Document scanning, printing and posting services
• Debt recovery

According to Geoff Hislop, the council’s Parking Manager – Highways and Transport: “NSL is one of our trusted partners and the first point of call in the event that we require additional services. The company delivers a consistently high level of support enabling us to achieve compliance across the borough.”

The success achieved by NSL to date has seen the contract more than double in size including an increase in headcount from 4 to 11 civil enforcement officers. The close working relationship with the council has also led to additional work including the replacement of all pay and display terminals in car parks that had reached the end of their operational life. After procuring Flowbird terminals, as specified by the council, NSL managed the installation process which was completed over a two week period, keeping disruption to customers to a minimum whilst protecting council revenues.

NSL’s Highways team has also completed numerous pieces of work for the council including ad-hoc lining and pot-hole repairs at both on and off street locations. Other projects have included the painting of car park stairwells with specially sourced anti-graffiti paint used on the walls and anti-slip paint on the stairs. NSL has also installed height barriers for additional security at several car parks and overseen a project to replace CCTV surveillance cameras in all council car parks.

NSL also supported the council during the pandemic with the provision of a team of Covid Marshals. The initial three-month contract was extended twice in recognition of the high quality service provided and the number of marshals was increased to improve coverage. They carried out a range of services including:

• Engaging with businesses and providing signage and advice regarding social distancing regulations
• Reporting breaches of regulations by businesses for the enforcement team to action
• Patrolling parks and other green spaces to ensure social distancing compliance
• Reporting large social gatherings for the enforcement team to action

“We fully recognise the partnership opportunities made available through our contract with NSL Services which have significantly helped us during the Covid pandemic including on-street suspensions and enforcement across the borough. This has really assisted us to ensure the public were able to maintain social distancing during the peak of the pandemic. We look forward to working with NSL for the duration of the tender,” concluded Hislop.

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