LETTER OF THE DAY: Car park ‘stealth tax’

Pay and display
Pay and display
Derek Britton vanished from his family home in Fareham. Photo: Hampshire police

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I was pleased to see The News article about the morally wrong parking targets set by Havant council and hope that the publicity will make it reconsider the draconian methods it uses to raise stealth taxes (Council under fire for ‘morally wrong’ parking targets, Feb 9).

I parked at the Elm Grove car park in Hayling on November 24 2017 and pulled into a parking bay at 10.47am.

I purchased and displayed a ticket for two hours.

At this time I observed the enforcement officer watching me but did not pay this any particular regard.

On returning to my car I was surprised to see I had a parking notice and was somewhat confused as I was displaying a valid ticket.

After some thought and observation I realised the bay was designated for 20 minutes parking only.

This was marked on the road surface across two of the bays but was not particularly evident from the last bay, which is adjacent to the normal bays.

I was not aware of this distinction and feel it should be better signposted in direct sight of each bay.

I appreciate that I made a genuine mistake, however, I do feel the enforcement officer’s action in watching me park there and purchase a ticket almost amounted to entrapment.

One would have thought it reasonable for him to point out that I was in the wrong bay, as I obviously would not purchase a two-hour parking ticket to park short term.

Or he could have told me that I need not pay for 20-minute parking which is free.

Surely prevention is better than cure?

But clearly it isn’t if one is only interested in achieving targets.

Marlene Jones

Bracklesham Road, Hayling Island