Let's get this out of the way. I love and loathe the Congestion Charge: love the original Zone which for the most part did what it set out to do and loathe the newly expanded zone which - by including largely residential zones - simply gives a 90 per cent discount to the wealthiest boroughs and defeats the point of the project. Unless the point was to make money all along...
Far from controversial, my opinion has been backed up by a fantastic new device wonderfully named the 'KenBuster' which, rather than attempt to cheat the Congestion Charge, simply tries to protect users from its money grabbing talons.
You see according to official 2005/2006 accounts, Transport For London (TfL) made a total revenue of £210m of which approximately £65m is made up of congestion charge fines. This is where the KenBuster comes in. It is a small box roughly the same size as a mobile phone and has a built in GPS system which tracks when a vehicle enters the congestion charging zone and then triggers your payment to TfL automatically. Genius.
Matthew McCluskey, Inventor of the device and MD of KenBuster, said: "KenBuster understands that London traffic during certain hours can be problematic. However it is the fine, the judgement and the penalty for forgetting that we disagree with. The KenBuster is a device that was born from real emotions and we see it as a saviour for many London motorists who feel demonised by fines."
Currently unique in its offering, the KenBuster is available for pre-order immediately in time for its 1 December launch and costs £49.99 for the unit and £8pm for the service. A 'LifeTime' option is also on offer where the unit is bought for £199.99 and comes with no monthly fees - ever. With Congestion Zone fines running at £100 a shot (£50 for early payment) the KenBuster could pay for itself in no time.
Finally, if you live outside London and are wondering what all this has to do with you it does indeed beg the obvious question: There are places outside London...?