Ministers are considering introducing a universal vehicle parking “grace period” after the expiry of paid for time before a ticket is issued.

A number of local authorities already voluntarily operate “grace periods” after paid parking has expired, but now the Government says that “making this a statutory requirement is worthy of consideration”.

The Department for Transport is consulting on the potential introduction of such a measure as part of a major review of local authority parking strategies and Government options for parking enforcement.

The suggestion for a five minute “grace period” came from the Transport Select Committee in a wide ranging report following a recent inquiry looking at Local Authority Parking Enforcement in England.

Committee chairman Louise Ellman said: “Parking charges should not be imposed to raise funding for local authorities. We are pleased to learn that the Department for Transport has begun consulting on some of our suggestions, including the introduction of a statutory ‘grace period’ if people overstay their parking ticket by a few minutes.”

The British Parking Association said that it “generally supports” the introduction of a universal “grace period”.