Pensioner vows to take on parking firm

Harold Lea, of Bleak Hill Road, Eccleston, has vowed to contest a parking charge from with the private company Parking Eye.
Harold Lea, of Bleak Hill Road, Eccleston, has vowed to contest a parking charge from with the private company Parking Eye.

A PENSIONER was stung with a parking fine after dropping his disabled wife off at an annual function.

But Harold Lea, who was inspired to contact the Reporter after reading about fellow parking fine victim Michael Hevey, has since taken the fight to private firm ParkingEye.

The 81-year-old told of his shock at receiving a £100 fine after dropping his wife Rita, 79, who suffers from Parkinson’s, off for the Cowley Old Girls lunch at the Park Inn hotel.

He said: “As my wife is disabled, I parked up outside the hotel and helped her inside before driving off and returning a couple of hours later to pick her up.

“Two days later I got a letter through the post fining me £100. I was shocked. Even adding together the two times I was parked up my car was only there for less than an hour.

“I wrote to ParkingEye to explain what I had been doing and want them to have the courage to give their name and office address so I can discuss this with them face to face.”

Mr Lea was so incensed that he started researching the validity of the parking fine he had received on the internet.

He also told of his surprise at learning that private firms can now pay the DVLA to get car owners’ names and addresses.

Mr Lea added: “A parking ticket from a private firm is simply an invoice - not a fine. Parking companies have no power to recover parking charges without first taking court action.

“The only law governing parking on private land is the law of contract. But if the owner has only lost the cost of the parking space for one hour or less then that is what you should pay for. In my case £1, not £100. These parking companies are just trying it on.”

A spokesman for ParkingEye said: “The overwhelming majority of motorists using the car park do so without any issues. However, Mr Lea parked for more than 35 minutes without buying a ticket and so received a charge.

“Mr Lea has appealed, but we have rejected it. We have now advised Mr Lea that he has the right to make a further appeal to POPLA, the independent appeals service for the private parking sector.”