Drivers will be able to park in restricted bays on their street even if they do not have a permit to help ease the pressure of dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.

Harrow Council announced that it is easing up on laws around parking in areas usually covered by residential permits.

It means drivers who usually would not require one but have been forced to stay at home to prevent the virus spreading will be able to make use of the spaces.

The same rules apply for carers who might have to make additional journeys following the Government’s measures around staying at home.

Cllr Adam Swersky, responsible for emergency response at Harrow Council, said the decision was taken to “help residents” during the covid-19 pandemic.

He explained that those who receive tickets for parking in the bays without a permit will be able to get the fine cancelled if they appeal to the council with proof of their address.

"It's vital that people stay at home at the moment," he said. 

"For some people living in a controlled parking zone, that creates real challenges around how they park, for example if they are used to moving their car in their commute to work.

"That's why we've taken the decision to relax parking restrictions on resident permit bays for people who live in these zones.

"The new rules will also help key workers and registered volunteers when they visit vulnerable residents."

It comes after neighbouring Brent Council said it would relax some parking regulations in response to the “challenging situation”.

A spokesperson for the council explained that enforcement officers would focus on “serious contraventions” such as yellow line, zigzags at crossings, loading restrictions and obstructions of dropped kerbs.

Both councils noted that all residents should continue to follow regulations and, above all, should heed the Government’s advice around travel.

This covers only going out for medical needs or to the shop for essential items, only exercising outdoors once a day and only travelling to work if it is necessary.