Taxi drivers parking illegally have been targeted by police amid controversial plans to move Cambridge’s main rank.
But drivers are furious that officers are taking a “zero-tolerance” stance on taxis over-ranking in St Andrew’s Street.
The move comes after 600 people signed a petition opposing the relocation of the rank to Drummer Street.
Struggling taxi drivers have been battling with police over the issue of over-ranking in a long-running saga.
Adrian Matlby, a taxi driver, said: “The police said recently they were not going to enforce the 20mph limit because it was a waste of resources, but isn’t giving taxi drivers tickets a waste of resources too?
“There are just six spaces on that rank and they want to get rid of it. And Drummer Street is no good since National Express coaches moved to Parkside. You can never get a fare there now.
“What they should do is put another four spaces in St Andrew’s Street and put a sign in the Drummer Street rank telling drivers if a space is free in the main rank.
“The drivers have no choice – unless they go around and around the block, but that uses fuel and causes more pollution.”
Fellow taxi driver Sean Whitehead added: “I think it’s crazy. Cambridge would be the only city in Britain without a taxi rank. I can understand why the police come down on over-ranking but all we need is a few more spaces.”
David Wratten, of Cambridge City Licensed Taxis, which represents the trade, is holding crunch meetings with the city and county councils this month.
He said: “The police are only doing their job because of complaints from residents in the past but drivers are trying to make a living.
“What we need is a solution to this problem and we are proposing a sign with cameras that will alert drivers in Drummer Street that there is a free space in St Andrew’s Street.”
Police have previously branded the rank as a “hotspot for the obstruction of vehicles” and have been issuing the tickets to taxis after calls from residents to make it a priority.
Sgt Andrea Gilbert said: “Officers take a zero tolerance approach to vehicles parked in dangerous positions or causing an obstruction of the highway, including the footpaths.
“On Thursday, officers were clamping down on parking restrictions at St Andrew’s taxi rank.
“We would urge motorists to park sensibly in Cambridge city centre.”
Taxi drivers have previously threatened to bring gridlock to the city because of a shortage of taxi ranks.
Cambridgeshire County Council has proposed closing the rank in a bid to speed up bus travel and promised there would be a major public consultation.