The real cost of Wimbledon? A parking ticket

In the Red: Businesses and parking wardens cash in at this time of year

Share

What has tennis got to do with money? Everything. Let’s face it, the finance industry is full of racketeers while tennis is full of, well, racquets. And both are designed to part you quickly from your hard-earned cash.

The All England Lawn Tennis Club is not shy when it comes to charging for Wimbledon tickets.  A Centre Court seat today will set you back at least £74. For next Sunday’s men’s final prices start at £130 – and that’s if you’ve been lucky enough to get them in  the ballot.

That’s not bad value compared to the cost of the theatre or concerts, but the joy of learning that you’ve won a couple of tickets in the ballot can quickly turn to feeling like you’re swallowing something hard and jagged when you’re then presented with a bill for £260.

But that’s not the real cost of Wimbledon. At least not for people like me who live not far from the tennis club in south-west London. While it’s exciting to have the whole world descend on your doorstep for two weeks, we’re hit every which way by extra costs.

For starters there are opportunistic price hikes. The local fish shop, for instance, has raised the cost of a bag of chips from £1.75 to £2. You can clearly see the sticker with the new, hand-written price. I can’t blame businesses for cashing in, but have been pushing for some local loyalty deal. Sadly I got short shrift at the pub when I raised the notion.

But the most annoying thing about Wimbledon are the parking fines. Look, we already have to pay £135 a year to the council (Tory-controlled Wandsworth, as you’re asking) to park our old banger outside our house.

But the expensive permit isn’t valid during Wimbledon fortnight. Instead we are handed a temporary permit – but if it’s not correctly displayed on our car, we get hit with a £40 fine, which doubles to £80 if we don’t pay quickly.

So if you shove it casually in the front of the car and it falls off, you get fined, as I discovered last year (don’t worry, it’s carefully blue-tacked this year!).

The council’s traffic wardens are hugely diligent. I see them controlling the streets at 8.30am and 7.30pm. They may wonder what that constant grinding noise is behind them. It’s my teeth.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Read Next
The London Symphony Orchestra, led by Valery Gergiev, performs a free open-air concert in Trafalgar Square  

Help! London has been conquered by Event Security and nobody is safe from its pointless screens

Howard Jacobson
 

The people of Iraq cannot be left to suffer alone

Dominik Stillhart
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?
Season's finale brings the end of an era for top coaches and players across the continent

The end of an era across the continent

It's time to say farewell to Klopp, Clement, Casillas and Xavi this weekend as they move on to pastures new, reports Pete Jenson
Bin Laden documents released: Papers reveal his obsession with attacking the US and how his failure to keep up with modern jihad led to Isis

'Focus on killing American people'

Released Bin Laden documents reveal obsession with attacking United States
Life hacks: The innovations of volunteers and medical workers are helping Medécins Sans Frontières save people around the world

Medécins Sans Frontières's life hacks

The innovations of volunteers and medical workers around the world are helping the charity save people
Ireland's same-sex marriage vote: As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?

Same-sex marriage

As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?
The underworld is going freelance: Why The Godfather's Mafia model is no longer viable

The Mafia is going freelance

Why the underworld model depicted in The Godfather is no longer viable