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Smart Parking - Parking charge notice - help!

(26 Posts)
MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 14:33:13

DD1 is at uni 200 miles away and any post which comes to our home I open and then call her to tell her what's come for her (with her permission).

Today she received a Parking charge notice from Smart Parking. It states:

*Smart Parking Ltd believes that a parking charge notice (PCN) is payable with respect to the vehicles registration mark XXXXX for the alleged breach of advertised terms and conditions within (doesn't state carpark, just states a general area in our town). The contravention in question is Over Free time which is supported by the camera images of the vehicles entering and exiting the car park.

The images are on the sheet. Enters at 12.36 15 seconds and exits at 12.38 4 seconds.

They want to charge her £90 for the sake of 1 minute and 9 seconds.

I am fuming. Suggestions please on how to deal with this?

DD is in lectures and her phone is off, I don't want to worry her unless she actually does need to pay this massive fine.

Justmadeperfectflapjacks Wed 26-Apr-17 14:34:03

Google Legal Beagles. . Some fantastic advice about anything car related and fines etc. .

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 14:40:32

I would like some suggestions on how to word the appeal on the basis that 1 minute 49 seconds (not 4 as in my op) is a negligible amount of time which could be queried by a Court.

Or something.

I shall google the Beagle people.

Seeline Wed 26-Apr-17 14:46:30

Does this mean that the car was only in the car park for 1.49 mins or the period allowed for free parking was exceeded by that amount?
From the wording it would appear that the difference between entering and leaving the car park is less than 2 mins so legitimately could have entered, not found a space to park and so left. they can't charge for that?!
Also if they don't name the actual car park, you can't check the signs/regulations to see what the rules are.

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 14:49:18

No it was in for 1 hour, 1 minute and 49 seconds. For all I know she could have dropped her keys, purse or whatever and had to stop and pick them up. She could have been stuck behind someone trying to reverse into a space at snail's pace.

It says the area but not the car park. I will need to speak to DD later and find out where she was on that day (it's here, not where her uni is and she was home for a couple of weeks). I am just really pissed off!

Seeline Wed 26-Apr-17 14:51:13

Ah makes a bit more sense, your OP stated 12.36 and 12.38 - that did seem really extreme!!
I think you will need to clarify the car park, and see if your DD can remember anything about it.

Creampastry Wed 26-Apr-17 14:52:45

Isn't there a new ruling whereby you have 10 minutes grace?

JennyOnAPlate Wed 26-Apr-17 14:55:36

I thought there was a 10 minute grace period too. I think you'll need to speak to dd and find out which car park and what the signs in the car park said in the first instance. It's a massive amount of money for a minutes parking though!

weeblueberry Wed 26-Apr-17 14:56:56

Think the ten minute grace period only relates to council parking? Might be wrong though...

Chloe84 Wed 26-Apr-17 15:01:26

doesn't state carpark, just states a general area in our town

Surely this renders the notice illegal? How can they not tell you where you allegedly made a contravention?

Definitely appeal. Are they a BPA car park?

Hereward1332 Wed 26-Apr-17 15:13:53

I think the exact wording would help. If, for example, parking is limited to one hour, you could appeal on the grounds that she was 'parked' for less than an hour but one minute 49 was taken up finding a space and queuing to exit.

NewPapaGuinea Wed 26-Apr-17 15:18:58

Best of going here and asking:

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 15:44:21

I have messaged her, she's touring ambulance stations at the moment and can't talk but says on that day she had taken her friend and DD2 to the trampoline park and then to Asda in town. I presume the Asda one is where she got the ticket and I am going to go down and see where she parked (take DD2 with me) and look at signage).

Sorry should have said exited at 13.38. Must not type while riled up grin

Fruu Wed 26-Apr-17 16:12:34

I've had two private parking charges dropped after getting help to draft a letter from the lovely people on the pepipoo forums too, so I second the suggestion to look on there. smile Sometimes all it takes is writing to the company with a photocopy of your receipt to prove you were actually a customer of the carpark owner, so it could be very easy to resolve.

StarUtopia Wed 26-Apr-17 16:15:39

OK. Speaking as someone who tried to fight these bastards and lost - trust me you won't win. I ended up having to pay £160. (18months later and a lot of stress later)

I cannot repeat this or shout loudly enough


The minute you respond, you are admitting liability. I even had a lawyer on my case who told me (off the record!) that I should have just ignored it in the first place.


They WILL eventually get bored and give up. They have to prove you were actually driving.

(My other advice, if you knew where she got it from, is to speak to those people directly - so say for e.g. Morrison's car park, speak to Morrison's Store Manager. That WILL work and get you off)

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 16:34:54

Have actually spoken to DD now.

She says she was in the Asda car park, the bit where you have to walk over the flower beds ... so in other words the fucking Premier Inn car park next door.

I am going to look at signage and see if it's clear or not. The Premier Inn has just been built and one of my friends got stung here too and successfully fought an appeal but not sure what grounds she used.

She may have to just stump up though. Also the info I've found online says ignoring is not the way to go now after some legal win that says private companies can charge you on private land.

I will report back when I've been down after dinner.

NewPapaGuinea Wed 26-Apr-17 16:44:48

These extortion rackets parking companies prey on people coughing up either straight away or after threats of court action. Defo seek advice from the Pepipoo site and don't do anything until you do.

OddJobMan Wed 26-Apr-17 16:51:01


Legislation was changed in 2013 for England and Wales . you cannot ignore these letters any longer

CatEatCatWorld Wed 26-Apr-17 17:26:58

Just last week i got a ticket from Parking eye for being 2 minutes over the time at the local hospital. I called the hospital and they agreed it was unreasonable not to allow a grace period so have cancelled the ticket for me (not had a letter to confirm yet so they'd better have lol)

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 19:09:42

Well unfortunately, after taking DD2 down to said Asda it seems DD1 parked in the wrong car park. One car park has 2.5 hours free parking (Asda), the other which is right next to it and is separated by flower beds is for the Premier Inn, Costa and Subway. All three have one of those machines to put in your registration number when you stay there/buy something so DD has had to cough up on this occasion.

She says she has definitely learned her lesson to check where she's parking and is grateful at least she has no points on her licence.

Tough one to learn but she's pretty philosophical and accepted she's been a complete banana.

Cat That's crazy, it can take more than two minutes to get out of any hospital car park! Hope you get that confirmed, it's an obscene amount of money for 2 minutes!

Dowser Wed 26-Apr-17 19:24:57

If it's not blindingly obvious she wasn't in Asda car park, then a polite letter to premier inn might help.
They only state she was over by less than two minutes.
If that's what they are doing her for, rather than the wrong car park you might be able to argue the toss about that.
I eould still give pepipoo a go.
They are very knowledgeable

MycatsaPirate Wed 26-Apr-17 19:29:02

To be fair there's a great big sign stating that it's monitored by ANPR cameras. There is a main road, you turn right and then there are two turnings on the left, the first for Premier Inn, the second for Asda. I'm pretty sure she wouldn't have a leg to stand on.

And the way I see it is she has learned a valuable lesson to double check parking regs wherever she goes.

The Asda one is 2.5 hours for free. You used to have to get a ticket and then get a refund when you got your shopping but the machines broke down so often they just dumped it and now do free parking.

Dowser Wed 26-Apr-17 19:34:44

What a shame. I also say a nice polite letter is worth a go.
£90 is so harsh.
If the car park wasn't full I'm sure she didn't rob them of £90 worth of revenue.

BeezerBubble Wed 26-Apr-17 19:39:36

Up to date advice here , covers most of these companies, private/rental cars and diffences in Scotland/England

SheDoneAlreadyDoneHadHerses Wed 26-Apr-17 19:41:57

I second Beezer on going on moneysavingexpert. I'm currently dealing with a Letter Before Court because the parking company's bloody parking app didn't bloody work their end.


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