Blackie the barber blows whistle on traffic wardens
IT'S time to blow the whistle on traffic wardens, says barber Andy Blackwell.
The 51-year-old, who made headline news after being placed on the Cornwall Council's "blacklist" for using a megaphone to warn motorists about patrolling traffic wardens, has come up with a new way of raising the alarm.
In his quest to keep Liskeard's shoppers ticket-free, he has been handing out whistles to shopkeepers urging them to alert customers when they spot a warden prowling the streets.
Mr Blackwell, also known as Blackie to his friends, said: "I want everybody to be blowing a whistle like party-time in Rio. The traffic wardens blew the whistle on me so I'm going to blow the whistle on them."
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The barber said he wants to see free parking in all of Cornwall's towns to help support local businesses.
"I want us to be on an equal footing to big stores like Morrisons and Trago. It's free to park there. Why would people come into the town when they know they have to pay?
"And if they have to impose any form of cost it should be in a less intrusive way so you pay when you have finished what you're doing.
"It's not so much a vendetta, we just want to be left alone. We are not a big faceless city making millions. We are just scraping a living at the moment."
Mr Blackwell has bought 600 whistles and is now hoping to sell them to raise funds for charity.
"I realised I can't just keep on giving the whistles away to people," he said.
"I want to raise money for the children's hospice by selling them on."
He hopes his campaign will spread to other towns and more people will take a stand against the cost of parking.
"It's going to go on from here," he said.
"I want everyone to stand up and support one another and just have a bit of fun.
"I want this to spread to every single town in Cornwall. I want everybody to be doing it for their own towns.
"If you don't stand up for something you will fall for everything."