Leicester

Man fined 'for helping homeless on Christmas Day'

CCTV footage of Lee Williamson's car parked at the bus stop on Christmas Day Image copyright Leicester City Council
Image caption Lee Williamson said he pulled in to a bus stop to give a homeless man clothes, food, and to chat to him

A man who pulled in to a bus stop on Christmas Day to help a homeless man was fined by a council.

Lee Williamson, of Evington, Leicester, said he stopped to give a homeless man a blanket, hat, gloves, scarf, food, and chat to him.

He later received a £70 fine, despite there being no buses on 25 December.

Leicester City Council said the camera enforcement was an important safety measure after a cyclist died there in 2016.

Mr Williamson, 43, said: "I feel like I am being punished for helping someone - £70 could have put a homeless guy in a B&B for a week.

"Normally that is a busy road and I would never dream of stopping in a bus stop. But with it being Christmas Day, with no traffic and buses I could not see the harm in it."

Image copyright Lee Williamson
Image caption War veteran Mr Williamson said it is normally a busy road and he would "never dream" of stopping in a bus stop

He added that he wished the council could have "a little more discretion and common sense".

"I am not going to pay it. They will have to take me to court," he said.

City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said: "While buses may not be operating on Christmas Day, there is every likelihood that cyclists and other traffic will be using this stretch of road and stopping illegally in this area should still be considered dangerous.

"While we do recognise the good intentions in this instance, ample safe and legal parking was available within just a few metres of the bus clearway."

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