Another two of High Barnet's ULEZ cameras are out of action after having been cut down with an angle grinder in a fresh wave of sabotage by vandals protesting at Transport for London's £12.50 charge on vehicles which fail to meet the new ultra-low emissions standards.


Because of its position as an entry point to the ULEZ zone, cameras on roads in and around High Barnet have been subjected to repeated acts of sabotage since the charge came into effect at the end of August last year.

One of the most daring so far was the felling of the camera pole, above, at the junction of St Albans Road and Stapylton Road – which left the town centre’s road sweeper with an “unexpected item” of litter blocking the pavement.

This camera, cut round with an angle grinder just above the base, was then pushed over – an act of vandalism carried out within yards of the Stapylton Road bus stand.

Nearby residents thought it was cut down overnight between Monday (29.1.2023) and Tuesday, but they didn’t hear anything.

The St Albans Road/Stapylton Road junction is busy and there must have been a danger of being captured on CCTV or a vehicle dash cam.

The second camera to be sabotaged was on Hadley Green at the junction of Drury Road and Sydney Chapman Way – and this camera was a replacement for a camera cut down in December.

The nearest properties are the historic Wilbraham’s almshouses but the open aspect of Hadley Green offers less chance of being noticed.

Within days of TfL workmen installing a new twin camera at the Drury Road junction it was vandalised again.

Even before the charge took effect cameras in and around High Barnet started being sabotaged – connecting cables to three cameras at traffic lights at the junction of East Barnet Road and Margaret Road were cut over the August Bank holiday and so were cables on the camera at traffic lights at the junction of Barnet Hill and Underhill.

The anti-Ulez attacks around High Barnet have been nothing like as extensive in the London Borough of Bromley where most recently eight sets of traffic lights were cut down in order to disable the cameras.

Because of the extent of the damage, newspaper journalists have been trying without success to force TfL to say how many cameras have been sabotaged and how much it is costing to repair them.

TfL have refused on the grounds that this information would be “of great interest” to those who wished to disrupt the Greater London transport network for their own notoriety – especially to the group describing themselves as the “blade runners”.

Barnet’s status as a troublesome gateway to the ULEZ zone is illustrated by TfL’s reluctance to replace the camera that was overturned in Arkley at the Rowley Lane junction with the A1 fly over.

This lenses of this camera were blocked repeatedly with foam before it too was sawn through at the base and then pushed over.