Khan caves in as ULEZ scrappage scheme expanded to include families on child benefit and small businesses

1 June 2023, 08:49 | Updated: 2 June 2023, 16:29

Sadiq Khan has backed down and expanded the ULEZ scrappage scheme - but critics say it does not go far enough
Sadiq Khan has backed down and expanded the ULEZ scrappage scheme - but critics say it does not go far enough. Picture: Getty/Alamy

By Chay Quinn

Sadiq Khan has announced a major expansion of the ULEZ scrappage scheme - including families on child benefit and small businesses in the controversial plans in a concession to rivals.

The scheme was an accompaniment to the imposition of the Ultra Low-Emission Zone in all London boroughs - slated to begin this summer pending legal challenge.

Under the new plans, there will now be support for:

  • Londoners receiving child benefit.
  • Businesses registered in London with fewer than 50 employees.
  • London-based charities looking to scrap or retrofit up to three vans or minibuses.
  • Care workers who need support will also be “targeted for help".

The updated plans will come into effect from the end of July.

Read More: 'It's another nail in the coffin!': the London businesses at risk of going bust due to ULEZ expansion

Sadiq Khan talks ULEZ expansion

Khan is still expected to press on with the controversial plans to expand the Ulez
Khan is still expected to press on with the controversial plans to expand the Ulez. Picture: Getty

Mr Khan said: “The majority of vehicles in London are already Ulez compliant and will not have to pay anything. But I completely understand the concerns of people who may not have a compliant vehicle and are worried about how they’ll make the transition.

“We already have the biggest-ever scrappage scheme in place to support Londoners on low incomes, London based micro-businesses and charities and disabled Londoners.

“But I’ve listened to families and small businesses in outer London who want more support and I’m pleased to be able to announce today a major expansion to the scheme run by TfL to ensure we can help them.”

Read More: 'I’ll switch off Ulez expansion cameras on day one': Paul Scully announces bid to become Tory London Mayor

Read More: Man charged with damaging Ulez cameras, as police launch crackdown after TfL report 96 incidents of criminal damage

Conservative mayoral prospect Paul Scully said: “The bare minimum is giving more Londoners access to the scrappage scheme.“The right thing to do is scrapping the Ulez expansion all together.”

Conservative London Assembly Member for Bexley and Bromley, Peter Fortune, told reporters: “This unnecessary money-grabbing scheme will be a disaster for Londoners, hitting charities, small businesses and low income families the hardest.

“However, if he is determined to force Ulez though, he should make sure people have the help they need. Be in no doubt, however, that he is offering the bare minimum and this minor change will not cover the crippling expense of buying a new car.”

City Hall data shows that 6,892 applications have been approved so far, totaling £25,372,800 - meaning that no extra funding beyond £110million will be allocated.

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