Tens of thousands of diesel vehicles on Havering’s roads despite looming ban

PUBLISHED: 15:00 14 May 2018 | UPDATED: 13:06 16 May 2018

The UK government has announced proposals to ban sales of new diesel cars from 2040. Picture: Press Association.

The UK government has announced proposals to ban sales of new diesel cars from 2040. Picture: Press Association.


Tens of thousands of diesel cars and vans are still clogging up Havering’s roads, despite drivers being encouraged to move away from them in favour of cleaner fuels.

Figures from the Department for Transport and the DVLA show that 36,339 new and existing diesel cars were registered in 2017 in the area - 32per cent of all cars.

There were also 11,953 registered diesel vans.

Despite the questions asked of diesel technology following 2015’s Volkswagen scandal, in which the German manufacturer was found to be cheating emissions tests, 1,003 more diesel-powered cars were registered in Havering last year than in 2016.

The UK government has since announced proposals to ban sales of new diesel cars from 2040, as well as exclusively petrol-powered vehicles. Around 40,000 premature deaths every year are linked to the country’s poor air quality.

It signals a remarkable turnaround in the popularity of diesel, with Gordon Brown introducing tax breaks on new diesel-powered vehicles as recently as 2001.

Of the 100 people that took part in the Recorder’s poll, 55pc of votes own a diesel powered car and don’t plan on changing to a petrol car in the future, while 19pc of voters do own a diesel powered car but plan to change this in the future.

Just 5pc of participants in the poll said they don’t own a diesel car because they are aware of the negative impact on the environment.

Adam Grace from Romford drives a secondhand small diesel van.

He told the Recorder: “I run a very small business and can’t afford to buy new vehicles. A couple of years ago I needed to replace my clapped out old van, I was looking for about four months and could not find one.

“So I had to buy diesel. Why aren’t the government insisting that car manufacturers only produce petrol vans?”

Alison Lloyd from Hornchurch added: “I agree regarding the desire to reduce pollution but for most a car is a big financial outlay.

“Paying a token incentive won’t work as the value of my car is negligible but the value of my car to me is the cost of getting a replacement.”

In total, 135,119 vehicles were registered in Havering last year, 420 fewer than in 2016.

There were 1,043,910 diesel cars and vans registered across London in 2017, and 16.8 million across the UK - an increase of 3pc on 2016.

“The number of registered petrol cars reached a peak in 2004 and then began to fall as more people opted for diesel, to the point where we now have 12.3 million on Britain’s roads,” said RAC spokesman Simon Williams.

“The tide has now begun to turn as motorists go back to petrol, or choose an alternatively fuelled vehicle, as a result of emissions from diesel vehicles being found to be harmful to health.”

Latest Romford News Stories


I like science fiction. I grew up wearing glasses so I didn’t have much say in the matter.

In recent weeks we have brought you the stories of families who have found a lifeline in Hornchurch charity First Step.

Yesterday, 16:54

A former Bomber Command rear gunner who lied about his age so he could join the RAF during the Second World War died in Romford last week.

Yesterday, 15:55

The brutal murder of an 85-year-old great-grandmother bludgeoned to death in her Romford home by a debt-ridden gardener has left a “hole in her family that will never ever be filled”.

Yesterday, 15:00

The mother of a three-year-old with a rare genetic condition described a Hornchurch charity that supports youngsters with disabilities and special needs as “their shoulder to cry on”.

Yesterday, 12:25

A Romford handyman has admitted bludgeoning an 85-year-old widow to death with a hammer.

Yesterday, 12:10

Police officers were called to break up a large group of schoolchildren outside Havering Sixth Form College after reports of a fight yesterday (Thursday, November 15).


From November, The Mercury in Romford begins to celebrate Christmas. The mall has plenty of gift ideas, fun events and activities for everyone

Vauxhall has completed its sport utility vehicle range with the third, and largest, Grandland X. We put the SUV, now available at Tony LeVoi in Romford, to the test.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

News from your area


A Romford photographer impressed the judges of a national creative photography competition with a picture of a stunning sunset.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now