NCP insists its machines are working correctly at Portsmouth multi-storey car park after flurry of complaints

A PARKING firm that runs a multi-storey car park in Portsmouth has insisted its machines are working correctly after a flurry of complaints have made headlines.

By Kimberley Barber
Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 9:22 am
John Tollow (76) from Old Portsmouth, received a car parking notice from NCP car park in Crasswell Street, Portsmouth multi-storey in September 2020. Picture: Sarah Standing (050321-4375)

NCP runs the multi-storey car park in Crasswell Street and scores of readers have been in touch with The News following a story in January about a couple who were charged £100 after an 11-minute stay when they could not get the machine to take their payment card.

Following that story, Joanne Etherington, of Hayling Island, came forward to say that she is fighting a charge that she says was issued as the machine was faulty, and Paulsgrove couple Gary Jeffery and his wife Karen, also then spoke out about their trouble appealing two tickets issued by NCP.

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NCP car park in Crasswell Street, Portsmouth. Picture by Google Maps.

Last week John Tollow, from Old Portsmouth, also got in touch to say he felt he had been unfairly ticketed, but as he felt pressured by the threatening letter, he coughed up – only to later regret giving in to the firm’s demands.

John, 76, said: ‘I don’t think they should be allowed to get away with it. I don’t know whether it was my fault or the machine but I would like to think that I can operate a parking machine.

‘I don’t want my money back, I wanted to offer my support to Joanne as she had a very valid argument. NCP has said that its machines work perfectly well but it’s clear from the level of correspondence in The News that it isn’t true.’

A spokesperson for NCP said that it would not be issuing any more statements about parking issues at Crasswell Street - and insisted that its machines are working.

John Tollow (76) from Old Portsmouth, received a car parking notice from NCP car park in Crasswell Street, Portsmouth Picture: Sarah Standing (050321-4367)

They said: ‘With the light of your requests in mind, we have repeatedly reinvestigated individual cases and the payment machines performance during the period each customer was parked.

‘We have also now reviewed customer transactions versus penalty charge notices issued on all machines on these sites and we can confirm that over 97 per cent of customer transactions are done correctly with hundreds of customers paying using the payment options via our machines and the payment apps available, and just three per cent of customers over this period not paying either at all, or for the correct time period that they were parked for.

‘With this in mind we would like to remind all customers that if they feel they have been unfairly issued with a PCN they should appeal and if they feel that outcome of the internal NCP appeals process is still not fair then they can appeal further to POPLA for an independent assessment, and whose decision we will stand by.

‘The appeals process is very easy to follow for all PCNs. Having re-assessed these cases as you requested and reinvestigated them, we are able to confirm once again that the machines are working and that we will not be commenting any further.’

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