A TOURIST was left £1,200 out of pocket after his camper van was blocked in a car park with 5ft posts.
Geoff Holman was visiting Hayling Island with his family as part of their holiday around England. But after parking their camper van in a car park near Langstone Bridge to explore the Billy Trail, they were stunned to find themselves blocked in by two wooden posts .
Geoff, who lives in Norway with his wife Anja and children Sigurd and Espen, said: ‘We left our camper van in a car park which had no signs with parking restrictions.
‘But when we returned we found we couldn’t get back out. Two posts had appeared and we couldn’t get it through. It was funny at the time because it was something we never expected to happen.’
The family were due to travel on a ferry from Harwich, in Essex, to Denmark. But they missed it after becoming stuck. Geoff’s wife and children were forced to catch a plane back to Norway as the youngsters started school on Monday.
He added: ‘I was quite flexible so I wasn’t panicked about the situation but my wife and children had to get back to Norway so we had to pay £900 for plane tickets.
‘We had already paid for the ferry tickets which were £300 so it has cost us a lot of money.
‘I intend to take action against the council for costs.’
Geoff said there were no signs saying who the car park belonged to or warning him that the posts would be put up.
‘I was looking around for a number or company but found nothing,’ he said.
‘We had been very attentive when travelling around to check where we could park but there was nothing. They could have left us a note with a number on.’
Havant Borough Council is in charge of the car park.
Jackie Batchelor, executive head of environment and neighbourhood quality, said: ‘If Mr Holman had contacted the council we would have ensured he could leave the car park, as we run a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week service.
‘Alternatively if he had called for police assistance they would have contacted our out-of-hours service.
‘We have spoken to the contractors who are undertaking work within that car park and they had made provision for the vehicle to leave safely.’
She added: ‘The posts at the entrance had been put into place to prevent unwanted, oversized vehicles and unauthorised encampments in the car park.’