London Stansted Airport has installed Videalert CCTV enforcement cameras to eliminate the incidence of tailgating as drivers attempt to leave the drop off zones and short term car parks without paying. The cameras were switched on in February 2021 and were supplied as part of an ongoing contract with NSL, the UK’s leading provider of parking enforcement services, which includes back office processing and debt recovery services.

According to Steve Mills, Surface Access Manager – Landside Operations at London Stansted Airport: “NSL has provided us with a cost effective enforcement solution that will enable us to rapidly achieve high levels of compliance, particularly in respect of the repeat offenders that try to avoid paying their parking charges. This has been a particular issue in short term car parks where people have routinely stayed two weeks without paying. The cameras will help us to eliminate lost parking revenues and improve safety for all passengers around the airport.”

Videalert CCTV enforcement cameras have been installed at the exits of the drop off zones and short term parking. Each camera monitors two lanes simultaneously capturing the number plates of every vehicle that passes through the barriers. They transmit data to Videalert’s hosted digital video platform where evidence packs are automatically compiled for review by operators at NSL’s Oldham Shared Service Centre. Penalty charge notices are then sent to the owners of all vehicles committing an offence.

NSL has also provided the airport with a Videalert mobile enforcement vehicle (MEV) to reduce the incidence of drivers stopping or parking on access road verges. These roads are designated as no stopping areas and the MEV will act as a deterrent to the many taxis, private hire vehicles, friends and relatives that cause traffic congestion and safety issues in these areas by waiting to drop off or pick up passengers. With front and rear facing cameras, the MEV automatically captures the number plates of stopped vehicles in unattended mode and transmits footage to the Videalert platform.

Mark Jones, Operations Director at Videalert, added: “This is one of the first such installations of Videalert cameras on private land and demonstrates the breadth of our range of integrated transport and enforcement solutions.”

The shared parking service for the London Boroughs of Wandsworth and Richmond upon Thames is expanding its usage of Videalert’s unattended rapidly deployable CCTV systems. The cameras, used to enforce a wide range of bus lane and moving traffic applications, ensure that roads are safe for motorists and pedestrians, reduce pollution and protect the parking needs of residents, businesses and visitors to both boroughs.

According to Nick O’Donnell, Assistant Director for Traffic and Engineering for Richmond and Wandsworth Councils: “As a shared parking service, our focus is to synchronise and consolidate resources, systems and best practice to improve operational efficiency and achieve cost savings. The Videalert platform allows additional camera assets and enforcement applications to be cost effectively added, offers the flexibility to capture multiple contraventions alongside important data and provides a future-proofed investment for civil traffic enforcement.”

As part of this project, Richmond is transitioning to Videalert’s fully hosted platform which is already used by Wandsworth. The configuration from the council’s existing on-premise server was replicated on the hosted platform in advance of the switch over to minimise disruption to ongoing review activities and outstation cameras.

Videalert is also converting camera locations that currently connect to the council’s local area network to a wide area network configuration using its Rapidly Deployable Server (RDS) and upgrading SIM cards within all existing RDS units from 3G to 4G. This will deliver a significant performance improvement across the camera estate in terms of speed and reliability of data transfer to the hosted platform.

Marston Holdings added: “We have been working with Richmond and Wandsworth councils for many years and are privileged and excited to be continuing our relationship. We are looking forward to collaborating on projects in support of the Councils future ambitions and further advance the Videalert hosted enforcement solution as key component of Marston Holdings’ design, build and enforce solutions for Civil Parking Enforcement, Clean Air and Low Emission Zones.”

Marston Holdings, the UK’s leading provider of integrated, technology-enabled transport and enforcement solutions, has announced that it has won a place on Crown Commercial Service’s Transport Technology and Associated Services (TTAS) framework.

The new framework runs through to 31st October 2025 and makes it easier for government and public sector organisations to procure Marston’s full range of design, build and enforce solutions that are currently supporting many of the clean air zones across the UK.

Marston Holdings can now be specified for all seven lots within the framework including:

• Lot 1 – Transport Professional Services
• Lot 2 – Transport and Pedestrian Control
• Lot 3 – Transport Signage and Lighting
• Lot 4 – Transport Data Services
• Lot 5 – Sustainable Transport Technologies
• Lot 6 – Major Transport Solutions
• Lot 7 – Catalogue

With services and technology in all the above lots, Marston Holdings will enable local authorities to make tangible progress towards their net zero pledges by enabling the design and delivery of pollution and emission reduction schemes of every scale. This includes planning through its award winning transport consultancy Project Centre through to effective enforcement using Videalert’s CCTV technology which includes fixed, mobile and hosted solutions that are quick to deploy and deliver a rapid return on investment.

The TTAS framework will provide local authorities with the professional support and technology needed to design, build and enforce environmental schemes such as clean air zones, low emission zones and moving traffic contraventions as the remaining elements of Part 6 of the Road Traffic Act 2004 are enacted over the coming months.

“With a long track record of successfully working in partnership with the public sector, we are delighted to have won a place on this important framework,” commented Marston Holdings. “Being awarded a place in every lot confirms our ability to provide complete, sustainable solutions of the highest quality across the end-to-end transport sector.”

Crown Commercial Service supports the public sector to achieve maximum commercial value when procuring common goods and services. In 2020/21 it helped the public sector to achieve commercial benefits equal to £2.04 billion – supporting world-class public services that offer best value for taxpayers.

Videalert has launched a new electric mobile enforcement bike (MEV-B). This is the only bike currently available with Manufacturer Certification and will enable councils to efficiently enforce a wide range of moving traffic, parking and clean air zone contraventions whilst demonstrating their commitment to reducing emissions.

Videalert’s new MEV-B is based on the Niu Cargo bike, from Niu Technologies, which designs, manufactures and sells high-performance smart e-scooters. It uses two 29Ah Lithium batteries to give a range of up to 70 miles in urban applications. The batteries are removable allowing fully charged replacements to be quickly fitted to extend the number of shifts it can cover on a daily basis. Fitted with front and rear disc brakes, the MEV-B also has a regenerative braking system which returns energy from braking to the battery.

The on-board systems are totally automatic requiring no manual operation and are powered by a separate battery with sufficient capacity to handle two shifts per day. The MEB-V is equipped with two dual camera units, one forward and one rear facing, each comprising both an ANPR and a colour camera which captures contextual video evidence. These ONVIF-compliant HD cameras deliver superior capture rates of up to 98% with just a single pass at normal road speeds.

According to Videalert: “This new MEV-B will enable councils to demonstrate their commitment to improving air quality by reducing vehicle emissions whilst undertaking essential compliance monitoring. It also further extends our market-leading portfolio of traffic enforcement and management solutions.”

Marston Holdings has introduced a new notice processing and enforcement service that will help councils to effectively enforce contraventions committed by foreign registered vehicles (FRVs) on British roads. These vehicles are more likely to contravene traffic and parking regulations than drivers of UK registered vehicles as well as being less likely to pay the penalty charges which they incur.

This pan European debt recovery service for councils is delivered in conjunction with ParkTrade, a Swedish technology company that is part of Marston Holdings, which has established access to many national Vehicle Licencing Agencies (VLAs). This relationship enables Marston to access European vehicle registration databases on behalf of clients to identify and process contraventions by FRVs as well as providing debt recovery services across Europe through Marston Recovery.

According to Marston Holdings: “Many penalty charge notices are simply written off by councils as it is often impossible to trace the owners of FRVs and, even when they can be traced, there is no legal process by which they can be made to pay civil penalties. As well as protecting revenue for local authorities, this service sends out a message to foreign and UK drivers alike that the rules apply to everyone.”

Using this service, councils no longer need to write off all debt incurred by FRVs from many European countries for parking, moving traffic, clean air and low emission zone contraventions.

Marston Holdings, the UK’s largest provider of integrated technology-enabled solutions, transportation and enforcement services, has been shortlisted as one of Investor in People’s top 20 organisations in Investors in People’s (IIP) Platinum 250+ award category. The company was awarded Platinum IIP accreditation in 2020, a level that is achieved by only 2% of organisations assessed and demonstrates an organisation-wide, long-term commitment to consistently meeting the highest standards and continuous improvement in terms leadership and people management.

According to Deborah Cooper, People Director at Marston Holdings: “Our greatest strength is the people we employ and we are committed to putting them at the heart of all our decision-making. Policies and practices around supporting people are embedded in every corner of the Marston Holdings organisation and we are committed to equality of opportunity and employment with a workplace free from discrimination.”

Marston Holdings will now be submitting an entry to be the number one Platinum organisation, which will be announced at The Investors in People Awards 2021 on the 23rd November 2021.

Videalert has unveiled a new mobile demonstration vehicle. Equipped a complete suite of traffic and parking enforcement applications, the vehicle is also fitted with individual monitors and perspex screens that allow occupants in the rear seats to participate in covid-secure mobile demonstrations.

According to Videalert: “This mobile demonstration facility will be of particular interest to the local authorities outside London and Wales that are planning to apply to the DfT for powers to enforce moving traffic contraventions local as soon as the remaining elements of Part 6 of the Transport Management Act 2004 are enacted. It will allow local authorities to gain a better understanding of how moving traffic enforcement can increase driver compliance and road safety whilst reducing congestion and improving air quality.”

The vehicle is equipped with six ONVIF-compliant HD cameras allowing demonstrations of optimum enforcement through a 360 degree field of view. A large format monitor has also been installed in the back of the vehicle enabling static demonstrations of the Videalert system to be given for larger audiences when the tailgate is open.

Videalert provides fixed and mobile CCTV enforcement cameras along with a DfT Manufacturer Certified hosted solution which eliminates the need for local authorities to procure and deploy any equipment within their IT infrastructures or install software on local PCs for evidence pack review. Images of contraventions are transmitted via secure cellular communications to this hosted platform where evidence packs can be viewed and validated with a simple three click process prior to sending to parking management systems for PCN progression. To reduce the number of appeals, registered keepers can view still photographs and video footage of alleged offences online.

Folkestone & Hythe District Council has awarded NSL, a Marston Holdings company, a three-year contract extension for the provision of parking enforcement and debt recovery services. Under this contract, which was originally awarded in 2017, NSL will continue to provide enforcement of on and off-street parking regulations, including the management of coastal car parks, special events and ongoing liaison with the police.

A Folkestone & Hythe District Council spokesperson said: “Over the period of the contract, NSL has consistently demonstrated the ability to enforce parking contraventions in a fair and professional manner whilst acting as a seamless extension to our own services. Also, when required, the company has gone the extra mile to assist in other areas including the enforcement of illegal HGV parking in residential areas near the M20.”

Marston Holdings added: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract extension which recognises our ability to work in partnership with local authorities to provide efficient, value for money and high-quality parking enforcement and debt recovery services. These services form a key part of Marston Holdings’ wider portfolio of end-to-end transportation and enforcement solutions which include urban design, CCTV and parking enforcement and notice processing through to debt recovery.”

Pret A Manger, the international food-to-go outlet, has awarded NSL a contract to assess the right to work of all applicants in their UK stores part of an ongoing recruitment campaign that is planned to start in May 2021. NSL, a Marston Holdings company, will be providing a fully managed service to verify that documents provided by applicants are genuine and that they have the Right to Work in the UK.

The contract was awarded to NSL as it was able to demonstrate a successful track record of providing a streamlined candidate experience for multi-site retail operators running high volume recruitment campaigns. It is expected that the checking service will reduce internal administration whilst mitigating the risk of non-compliance and potential reputational damage.

As part of this managed service, NSL will provide Pret with access to its market leading Valid8 checking portal that communicates directly with candidates via email and text messages. After verification checks are completed, a PDF status report is generated for Pret to upload to its Workday HR platform. When successful candidates arrive for induction, managers use the portal to digitally declare a visual comparison of the candidate and the original documents against images of the documents previously authenticated.

NSL stores all documents centrally in a GDPR compliant environment for a retention period as determined by Home Office rules. This data is protected from any unauthorised access using multi-factor authentication as well as strict password and data sharing policies.

Marston Holdings, added: “Our managed service is proving to be the market leading solution for organisations needing support with their Right to Work checks. Outsourcing this service to NSL will enable Pret to speed up the recruitment process and eliminate the need to arrange constant refresher training in the face of changing legislation following Brexit.”

Hexagon Software, one of the UK’s leading providers of financial and property management software solutions, has introduced a new AI-powered intelligent invoice capture solution. Available as part of the company’s hosted platform Hexagon Cloud, it will deliver immediate and significant cost savings by reducing manual processing time by up to 80% whilst giving greater control and visibility of invoices across the organisation.

According to Hexagon Software: “This intelligent invoice capture solution delivers significant efficiency improvements by further automating workflow processes and freeing up staff to handle more productive, client-facing tasks. It provides faster data retrieval and greater visibility of the whole invoicing process.”

Processing time is dramatically reduced by using Google’s AI engine to automatically locate all relevant data from emailed invoices regardless of individual layouts with an accuracy rate in excess of 90%. This self-learning solution quickly identifies where particular information is located on invoices and automatically posts the data directly into Dream, Hexagon’s market-leading financial accounting software solution.

The use of machine learning eliminates the need to manually add barcodes and scan individual invoices before keying in the required data. It also removes the need to create individual templates for each supplier, as required by other applications. Any unread invoices are placed in an exceptions queue for individual review and are automatically tagged to speed up the retrieval process and cross reference to other relevant documents stored in the system.

Supplier invoices that contain order numbers are automatically matched to purchase invoices according to predefined criteria and processing is carried out according to individual business rules. Authorised approvers are automatically notified of invoices that require their attention via email for authorisation from any internet-enabled location on any device. When approved, invoice values are automatically uploaded to Dream or other financial systems including SAP, Oracle, Sun, JDE, Movex, Navision and Sage.

“This Hexagon Cloud invoice capture solution provides real-time insights as to what purchase orders have been raised across the organisation,” continued Hexagon. “It also demonstrates the potential for AI moving forward, providing the power to speed up the processing of other type of documentation such as leases and contracts.”