Driver’s time ‘completely wasted’ by car park operator

Sam Warren was fined at the Meridian Centre even though he could prove he had paid Picture: Ian Hargreaves (170337-1)
Sam Warren was fined at the Meridian Centre even though he could prove he had paid Picture: Ian Hargreaves (170337-1)
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A DRIVER has told of his frustrations after having his time ‘completely wasted’ by a car park operator.

Sam Warren had parked at the Meridian Shopping Centre car park in Havant.

The 43-year-old put £1 for his time there into a ParkingEye machine, which froze and didn’t print a receipt, but kept the money.

He was later issued with a parking charge notice.

Sam, who works as a site manager, said: ‘The machine completely froze.

‘No buttons would work but it clearly showed “FEE PAID £1” on the screen, so I took a picture.

‘One week later I got a PCN for £100, discounted to £60 if I paid within two weeks.

‘ParkingEye allows you to appeal so I sent off a full explanation about what happened, and my picture which shows the money went into the machine.

‘It rejected my appeal with no reasoning as to why, and didn’t even acknowledge the fact I’d sent a picture.’

Sam, from Emsworth, took his woes to independent appeals service POPLA, which overturned the original appeal decision, meaning he didn’t have to pay the charge.

The company said by issuing Mr Warren with a PCN, ParkingEye implied he didn’t comply with the terms and conditions of the car park – but it failed to respond with evidence as to how.

Sam added: ‘It’s all just a complete waste of time and pretty stressful to sort out.

‘I shouldn’t be penalised for making all efforts to pay especially as the machine took my money anyway, I’m shocked ParkingEye wasn’t more understanding about what happened.

‘I’ve heard many complaints about the system in this car park and I urge 
any others wrongfully stung by the company to go to POPLA.’

A spokesperson for ParkingEye said: ‘If a motorist disagrees with our appeal decision they have the option to appeal to POPLA, who in this case were in favour of the driver.’