Fareham to London rail commuter charged for wrong ticket

Linda Turner was fined after using the wrong ticket machine at the Station Approach car park in Fareham. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (150028-1)
Linda Turner was fined after using the wrong ticket machine at the Station Approach car park in Fareham. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (150028-1)
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COMMUTER Linda Turner is warning others to check which machine they use to buy a parking ticket before leaving their car parked at a train station.

Software consultant Mrs Turner, from Bridgemary, often commutes to London from Fareham and usually parks at the car park next to Fareham train station.

However, after receiving a £95 penalty charge for not buying her ticket from the correct machine she wants to warn others so they can avoid making the same mistake.

Mrs Turner, 49, said: ‘When I got to the train station and parked at 6am, I ran over to the parking machines in the lower car park which you can barely see in that light as it was still pretty dark.

‘I tried to pay by card and both of the machines came up with the message “transaction processing” and then timed out.

‘I didn’t have my mobile phone on me to be able to call through and buy a ticket.

‘I ran up to the next machine and bought a ticket and ran back.

‘It was not until I got home that night to see that I had got a charge as I had not been displaying a valid ticket.’

Mrs Turner received a £95 penalty charge, which is reduced to £50 if paid within 14 days.

There are two car parks next to Fareham train station and in her rush Mrs Turner had inadvertently used a machine in the adjacent car park, which is operated by a different company.

Mrs Turner said: ‘It needs to be highlighted so nobody else gets caught out. I feel that if I hadn’t bothered with a ticket at all, then fair enough, but I had gone to the effort of trying to get a ticket. That is what has upset me.’

Although there are signs at the car park, Mrs Turner said these signs do not make it clear that you are entering a different car park.

James de Savary, managing director of Napier, which issued the fine, disagreed.

He said the car park is well lit, has a clear entrance and there were no reported problems with the pay machines that day.

Mr de Savary said: ‘There can be no confusion as to where our car park begins and ends.

‘Our signs and branding are different from the other car parks in the area, our signs also state that only tickets purchased from our blue pay stations are valid.

‘There can be no confusion as to how park correctly and it is the drivers responsibility to do so. I am happy we have acted both lawfully and correctly.’