Author Topic: G24 Parking Charge Notice  (Read 70 times)

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LittleRAY

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G24 Parking Charge Notice
« on: March 26, 2024, 01:10:51 pm »
Good day - I'm new and will try to follow the guidelines in the following (be kind  :) )


The driver of my vehicle parked in a car-park maintained by G24 Ltd. They frequent this particular car park, and have used it for many years without issue. The car-park is in a retail park where there are several shops.

On 14th March, the driver parked in the car-park and visited Costa Coffee. They were waiting for a friend who was late arriving by just over half an hour. The driver met the friend in Costa and they both sat and had a drink and some biscuits and stayed for some time chatting. The driver frequents Costa Coffee on a regular basis and has a loyalty card.

After the visit to Costa the two friends decided to pop to Sainsbury's for a mooch, a small shop and some lunch (about 15 to 20 metres away from Costa and situated on the same Retail Park). Afterwards, they returned to Costa with the plan to have another coffee and some cake, also discussing visiting Mountain Warehouse on the same site.

It was as this point that the friend suddenly panicked and mentioned that she thought there were restrictions saying that there was a maximum stay. The driver hadn't even thought about this! They'd been visiting for years (over 10 years, in fact!), and was only aware that the car-park should be used for visiting stores on the retail park (not to park there and walk into the local town). After seeking out some signage, which wasn't easy because the nearest sign was at an angle and barely visible because the edge of the sign was facing where they stood, they realised that they should leave the car-park asap as they may have exceeded the 180 minutes maximum stay.

I am the registered keeper of the vehicle used to park at this site, and received a "Contractual Parking Charge Notice" through the post on 23rd March. It was dated 19th March, and gives me 14 days from this date to pay the lower charge of £60. Otherwise, they want £100 from me - or the driver, if I am to name them.

The driver has written to both Costa Coffee and Sainsburys. Costa Coffee has replied basically saying that there is nothing they can do because the car park is not managed by them. Sainsburys, bless them, tried to be helpful. However, their car-park is managed by a separate company and not G24 Ltd, and so there is nothing they can do.

It may be worth mentioning that there are traffic lights beside Costa Coffee which enable shoppers to cross over to Sainsburys. There is no signage suggesting that you cannot park on the G42 Ltd car-park and walk over to Sainsburys which is advertised and located on the same retail park.

The retail park in question is: Crossley Retail Park, Kidderminster.

I drove to the car park yesterday (25th March) to get some images of the site and signage. Please see photos provided.

Google Street View has an accurate view of the car park. Some useful links are as follows:

Google Street View of the section of the car park where the driver parked: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Crossley+Retail+Park,+Carpet+Trades+Way,+Kidderminster+DY11+6DY/@52.3905994,-2.2553576,3a,75y,117.91h,92.69t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sMxXVdIF6KIeJMsEcQ_7LZg!2e0!6shttps:%2F%2Fstreetviewpixels-pa.googleapis.com%2Fv1%2Fthumbnail%3Fpanoid%3DMxXVdIF6KIeJMsEcQ_7LZg%26cb_client%3Dsearch.gws-prod.gps%26w%3D211%26h%3D120%26yaw%3D205.45543%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i16384!8i8192!4m15!1m8!3m7!1s0x48708c665534831f:0x41a22adf11a7252e!2sCrossley+Retail+Park,+Carpet+Trades+Way,+Kidderminster+DY11+6DY!3b1!8m2!3d52.3903682!4d-2.2555364!16s%2Fg%2F1vg_6r15!3m5!1s0x48708c665534831f:0x41a22adf11a7252e!8m2!3d52.3903682!4d-2.2555364!16s%2Fg%2F1vg_6r15?entry=ttu


Google Street View of the entrance used to enter car-park: https://www.google.com/maps/@52.3906369,-2.2545561,3a,75y,239.96h,99.37t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sc-_9iY4v_zRdqKrvwBvjVA!2e0!7i16384!8i8192?entry=ttu


I hope this is everything that you need. I'd very much like some advice here. £100 seems an extortionate amount of money for 36 minutes of parking... even £60 does not seem fair, especially as the time was used to spend money in the Retail Park that the car-park is set up for people to be able to do.

Thank you for your time in reading.

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LittleRAY

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2024, 01:16:09 pm »
Sorry, I realised you may need to see the reverse of this letter too...

DWMB2

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2024, 04:59:11 pm »
Thanks for providing such a thorough version of events - it's (sometimes frustratingly) rare!

To get any 'technical' appeal routes out of the way, it looks as though they have complied with Schedule 4 of the Protection of Freedoms Act, so they can seek to recover the charge from you as the registered keeper regardless of who was driving.

Looking at the contravention itself - there doesn't seem to be any dispute that the free parking period was exceeded. From the photos you have shown us there don't seem to be any major issues with the signage.

Your best bet would seem to be to try and get hold of the landowner. I note Costa have said the car park isn't managed by them - this is probably true, they'll be tenants of the retail park. See if you can find the details of the owners of the retail park (or their management agents) who will have hired G24, and see if they will intervene. The purpose of the parking enforcement is presumably to prevent non-customers blocking spaces, not to punish genuine customers, so try to appeal to the owners' good nature.

b789

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2024, 11:16:20 pm »
I disagree with regard to the signage. Whilst those GSV views are from October 2022, having navigated around that car park, I have struggled to see any obvious or prominent signs with the terms and conditions.

Unless they have added more signs with the terms since Oct 2022, this is easily defended on lack of signage as there is no way that the charge for breaching the contract is brought to the attention of the driver.

Have a read of the IPC CoP to see what they say about signs:

https://irp.cdn-website.com/262226a6/files/uploaded/IPC%20Code%20of%20PracticeV9%20V4.pdf
« Last Edit: March 27, 2024, 11:19:40 pm by b789 »

DWMB2

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2024, 11:27:25 pm »
I have struggled to see any obvious or prominent signs with the terms and conditions.
They are somewhat scarcely placed, granted...

LittleRAY

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2024, 09:38:18 am »
Thank you DWMB2 & b789.

The signage hasn't changed in that car park and the Google Street View is exactly as it is now. The sign I saw was also faded and I was squinting trying to read it... with my glasses on. There's definitely room to argue that the signs aren't clear, however...

DWMB2, I'm pleased to advise that your suggestion to contact the manager for the Retail Park worked! It didn't occur to me that there would be a way of contacting them or that they'd even care, but I was clearly wrong.

I've recently received an email back confirming that the "PCN" has been cancelled!! Amazing.

I really do appreciate you helping me and lending me your time.

There's still a part of me that's angry about the situation. Those signs aren't clear... and while the sign on entry does say "Customer Parking Only" there isn't time as a driver to safely read the smaller writing about checking boards for conditions.

Interestingly, I compared their signage to that of Sainsburys. On entry to Sainsburys there is a big yellow sign warning you have 3 hours max stay, and then there are loads of big yellow signs in the car park with reminders. It's very clear if you're parking in their car park that there are restrictions.

Reading the IPC guidelines was very interesting. They talk of wanting more powers and higher charges to prevent drivers from inconsiderate parking, but suggest there should be more leniency for those making genuine mistakes. They also say signage should be clear with use of contrasting colours, like black and white (not faded grey, obviously!). Both of these guidelines could've helped formulate useful arguments in this instance... I'm almost sad I didn't get to use them.

Thank you both so much! I just hope that others don't get charged like I did and then just do so without a fight.
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DWMB2

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2024, 10:32:54 am »
Excellent news, keep hold of that correspondence.

Regarding the signage, you could perhaps raise the point with the owners, seeing as they seem amenable to helping, showing that G24 aren't adequately bringing the T&Cs to motorists' attention, which is counterproductive from the retail park's point of view.

b789

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Re: G24 Parking Charge Notice
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2024, 12:57:07 pm »
Well done. Plan A is always the best way to get these scammers off your back.

Had this progressed any further, an appeal to the IAS, whilst highly likely to fail, simply because it is a sham, would have been useful preparation for defending at a claim hearing.

The signs on this site are not prominent clear nor legible from all parking spaces and there is insufficient notice of the sum of the parking charge. The minimum standards set out in the IPC Code of Practice (CoP) states:

8.1 The Operator must have clear signage located on the Private Land to confirm the Terms and Conditions in place.

This would mean that signs containing the specific parking terms, throughout the site, are prominent enough so that drivers are given the chance to read them at the time of parking or leaving their vehicle. Signs must be conspicuous and legible, and written in intelligible language, so that they are easy to see, read and understand.

In addition to this, within PoFA it discusses the clarity that needs to be provided to make a motorist aware of the parking charge. Specifically, it requires that the driver is given “adequate notice” of the charge.

PoFA defines “adequate notice” as follows: “(3) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (2) “adequate notice” means notice given by: (a) the display of one or more notices in accordance with any applicable requirements prescribed in regulations under paragraph 12 for, or for purposes including, the purposes of sub-paragraph (2); or (b) where no such requirements apply, the display of one or more notices which: (i) specify the sum as the charge for unauthorised parking; and (ii) are adequate to bring the charge to the notice of drivers who park vehicles on the relevant land”.

Considering the signage in place at this particular site against the requirements of Section 8.1 of the IPC CoP and PoFA, the signage is insufficient to give adequate notice of the charge and bring the parking charge to the attention of the motorist.