Fifty Third Report Contents

Instruments of interest

Removal and Disposal of Vehicles (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2021 (SI 2021/461)

21.This instrument rectifies an error in the Removal and Disposal of Vehicles Regulations 198612 to restore the power to civil enforcement officers in England to remove vehicles from a road for parking contraventions following the issue of a penalty charge notice. An incorrect cross reference in a previous amending instrument unintentionally removed this power with effect from 1 April 2015. The Department for Transport told us that local authorities who have removed vehicles in the last six years and charged for their return will have had legal cover to do so under the Interpretation Act 1978. We nonetheless regard this error as an example of poor checking by the Department.

Protection of Wrecks (RMS Titanic) (Amendment) Order 2021(SI 2021/470)

22.There is an International Agreement between the UK, the USA, France and Canada concerning the shipwrecked vessel RMS Titanic.13 Article 4 of this Agreement requires each State to regulate through a system of project authorisations:

“(a) entry into the hull sections of RMS Titanic…;” and

“(b) activities aimed at the artifacts from the RMS Titanic found outside of the hull of the wreck…”

23.This requirement is implemented in the UK by means of the Protection of Wrecks (RMS Titanic) Order 2003,14 which provides that specified activities carried out in the designated area around the wreck of the RMS Titanic require a licence granted by the Secretary of State, which may impose conditions or restrictions.

24.Article 4(2)(b) of that Order implies that activities aimed at conserving or curating artefacts found outside the hull of the wreck do not need a licence. This does not comply with the terms of the International Agreement and is not the policy intention: this amendment therefore clarifies that all activities involving artefacts from RMS Titanic must be licensed.

13 Agreement concerning the Shipwrecked Vessel RMS Titanic (CP 205). The agreement was made in 2003 but only came into force on 18 November 2019.

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