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  • FIRST POST
    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 5th Jun 17, 5:55 PM
    • 25Posts
    • 6Thanks
    Vielwerth
    *LOST* - Court claim issued - No Marked Bays, Confusing Signage
    • #1
    • 5th Jun 17, 5:55 PM
    *LOST* - Court claim issued - No Marked Bays, Confusing Signage 5th Jun 17 at 5:55 PM
    Hello there, first post, first PCN at risk of going to court.

    EDIT - Docs can be found here:

    drive.google.com/open?id=0BwXipWyUznKcOFJVZUJLUnJHYTQ
    (not allowed to post links so please copy and paste this into your browser.)

    Photo links can be found below.

    I've just had papers served by Northampton for some parking what I did back on 6th November 2016. This was in Cardiff and the company managing the site is the one directed by a failed sex toy company director.

    I parked in a "car park" (a muddy, gravel filled field) to visit a friend in the block of flats opposite. I admit to clearly seeing the signage, but I thought would nip in and ask my friend (the tenant) if it was okay to park there (if the car park was actively being managed, tickets being issued, etc). If not, I would move the car.

    Another friend who had arrived before me stated confidently that because there were no bays, and the T&Cs referred to being parked in a bay, that it was "alright". I took him at his word and left the car parked there.

    When I went to check the car a few hours later, a PCN was stuck to the windscreen. I immediately checked all the signs and noted that there were 5 signs in total. They were not all the same, however. There were two groups of signs, differentiated by the exact wording of the T&Cs (a set of 3 and a set of 2). The set of 3 looked more worn and generally a little older than the set of 2. But from a distance, an average person would not be able to tell that these signs say different things, and would likely assume that they were all the same.

    I'll refer to the set of 3 as the "old signs" and the set of 2 as "new".
    Here is an "old" sign.


    imgur.com/a/wiBKV

    And here is a "new" sign (the one I suspect that Link actually intended to apply to the site) -

    imgur.com/a/6T3HQ


    Here is a ground view of the site. Not an "allocated bay" anywhere to be seen.

    imgur.com/a/YyyaW

    Here are some preliminary notes I've typed up for my defence which I'll need to send off before the 13th June 2017:
    ----------------------------
    I submit that this claim by Link Parking be dismissed for the following reasons:
    Link Parking attempted to enforce a contract using signage that was faulty or contradictory.
    1. Two sets of terms and conditions, causing confusion.
    a. No indication of which particular T&Cs was intended to be in force.
    b. Signage of both sets of T&Cs look identical from a distance. I believe a reasonable person would not, on initial inspection, realise that there are two T&Cs.
    2. One set of terms and conditions offering a pay and display provision for parking, when there was no such provision (machines, tickets, etc).
    a. No details on signage on how to acquire valid pay and display documentation
    3. The other set of terms and conditions insisting on two conditions being fulfilled to prevent a PCN being issued, namely "displaying a permit" AND being "parked in an allocated bay". At the time of writing, there are no "allocated bays"; the parking area is waste ground composed of gravel and mud.
    Regardless of which T&Cs are intended by the claimant to apply to the site, it is impossible for a driver of a vehicle parked at the site to comply with the listed terms and conditions and the contract is therefore unenforceable (should I put this line in???)
    Other possible points -
    · Parking company claiming on behalf of Horizon Properties? (Horizon do not appear on the signage).
    · Gladstone Solicitors failed to respond to my time limit of 14 days. (they were 3 weeks late).
    · Who is the landowner?
    · Letters feel like they've been written by a computer, and do not specifically refer to the points I made.
    · Email from horizon advising of deadline for assistance with parking tickets was sent after the deadline mentioned in email had actually passed. Clearly there was intended to be some kind of "grace period". I was ticketed before this time was up.
    · Can T&Cs be enforced when one part (allocated bays) doesn't exist? The signage specifically says "permit AND parked in a bay"... Can a contract be enforced with just one half of the conditions (on the signage) in place to be complied with?
    · Tenant and I discovered discarded signage in a rubbish pile about halfway down the alleyway. They were two "new" signs. Was it Horizon Staff who put the signs up?

    ---------------
    Here is my actual defence that I have typed up and ready to go in MCOL.


    The claim is denied in its entirety except where explicitly
    admitted here. I assert that I am not liable to the Claimant for
    the sum claimed, or any amount at all, for the following reasons:

    1. The claimant insists that an enforceable contract has been
    created due to signage at the site in question. The signage is
    confusing and contradictory, and therefore an enforceable contract
    does not and has not existed. The problems with this signage are
    detailed below.

    1.a - At the site in question, there are two sets of terms and
    conditions.

    1.a.1 - One set of signage (referred to henceforth as the new
    signs) insists on two conditions being fulfilled in order to forgo
    the charge of £100 for parking. Namely that a permit must be
    displayed, AND the vehicle must be parked in an allocated bay.

    I am in possession of photographic evidence. The signage is
    clearly newer and cleaner, suggesting it has been put up well
    after the other set described below.

    1.a.2 - The other set of T&C signage (referred to henceforth as
    the old signs) insists on 1 of three conditions being fulfilled to
    avoid the same charge described in 1.a.1. The one condition of
    interest is:

    Parking is permitted for: Vehicles fully displaying a valid
    pay-and-display ticket and parked fully within the confines of a
    marked bay.

    I am in possession of photographic evidence. The signage is
    clearly older and dirtier, suggesting it has been put up well
    before the new set described above.

    1.b. - There is no indication whatsoever which set of terms and
    conditions is supposed to take precedence.

    1.c. - Signage of both sets of T&C signage look identical from a
    distance, even in clear weather and good lighting. I believe a
    reasonable person would not, on initial inspection, realise that
    there are two T&Cs.

    2. The new T&C signage refers to the need for both conditions to
    be fulfilled to avoid a charge. This is impossible, as there are
    no marked allocated bays onsite. I am in possession of
    photographic evidence which shows that the parking area is
    comprised of mud and gravel, and is, as of 20/05/2017, undeveloped
    waste ground, with no paint or other markings to define where
    these alluded to bays are.

    3. The old T&C signage, specifically the section listed in 1.a.2,
    states the ability to pay and display a ticket. Thus inferring the
    existence of such a provision (i.e. ticket machines, payment
    devices, etc). There is no such provision of this and I am in
    possession of photographic evidence of this.

    3.a - There are no visible details on how or where to obtain a
    valid pay and display ticket.

    3.b - The same argument from 2. also applies, in that there are no
    bays onsite for any vehicle to park in (the requirement for which
    is stipulated in 1.a.2)

    I would also like to point out that the Claimant's solicitors,
    Gladstone Solicitors, have failed to abide by Practice Direction
    for Pre-Action Conduct (paras 13-16), by failing to respond to my
    letter sent in response to their Letter Before Claim within the
    deadline stipulated in my letter (14 days), taking just over 4
    weeks to arrive.

    With the above, I feel it is clear that the signage the Claimant
    attempted to use to enforce a contract is confusing and
    contradictory, and therefore enforces nothing. It is clear that
    the Claimant has failed in their responsibility to the public and
    the landowner to provide clear signage if they wish to impose such
    terms and conditions on members of the public. As such, I am not
    liable for any sum or amount claimed by the Claimant. I therefore
    request the court to strike out the claim as having no basis or
    likelihood of success.
    ---------------
    I hope you'll be able to give some advice. I've never been to court before, and they're asking for approx. £263 (160 for the fine, 50 for the solicitor's fees, and the remainder for the court costs).
    If you require any other documentation (like my appeal letter to Link and letter to Gladstones) please do not hesitate to request this. (I did not appeal to IAS after reading online how they are considered a kangaroo court and that a win for the parking company can strengthen the parking company's position.)

    I can also make a rough site map if anyone wants.
    Last edited by Vielwerth; 04-10-2017 at 1:06 PM.
Page 1
    • Redx
    • By Redx 5th Jun 17, 7:07 PM
    • 16,487 Posts
    • 20,647 Thanks
    Redx
    • #2
    • 5th Jun 17, 7:07 PM
    • #2
    • 5th Jun 17, 7:07 PM
    edit the above post to remove any hint of who was driving

    from now on use the following words

    THE DRIVER

    THE KEEPER


    the word I should not be used wherever possible
    "ME , MYSELF and I" are banned

    Newbies !!
    Private Parking ticket? check the 2 sticky threads by coupon-mad and crabman in the Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking Board forum for the latest advice or maybe try pepipoo or C.A.G. or legal beagles forums if you need legal advice as well because this parking forum is not about debt collectors or legal matters per se
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 5th Jun 17, 9:05 PM
    • 51,473 Posts
    • 65,064 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #3
    • 5th Jun 17, 9:05 PM
    • #3
    • 5th Jun 17, 9:05 PM
    Here is my actual defence that I have typed up and ready to go in MCOL.
    We don't recommend that format for defence, not submitting it in MCOL. See the NEWBIES thread for how to set out a defence with headings, that you sign and date as a statement of truth and then email to CCBC.


    I'll refer to the set of 3 as the "old signs" and the set of 2 as "new".
    Here is an "old" sign.

    http://imgur.com/a/wiBKV

    And here is a "new" sign (the one I suspect that Link actually intended to apply to the site) -

    http://imgur.com/a/6T3HQ

    Here is a ground view of the site. Not an "allocated bay" anywhere to be seen.

    http://imgur.com/a/YyyaW
    Terrible car park, unclear and conflicting terms and as you say, no bays.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 12th Jun 17, 9:34 AM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    • #4
    • 12th Jun 17, 9:34 AM
    • #4
    • 12th Jun 17, 9:34 AM
    Defence sent via email to CCBC. Try as I might I really couldn't find any cases to cite about parking bays not existing or two sets of T&Cs. Hopefully I can expand on that in later stages.
    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 1st Jul 17, 6:28 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    • #5
    • 1st Jul 17, 6:28 PM
    • #5
    • 1st Jul 17, 6:28 PM
    Hello again.

    So, a directions questionnaire arrived a few days ago from Gladstones. It was as expected (asks for paper hearing, hearing to be in claimant's home court, etc).

    The notice of allocation at the back, however, is completely blank. I was under the impression that this page would have "stuff" on it, or a date by which I had to respond with my own directions questionnaire, or fill in that notice of allocation and send it back . Or am I supposed to wait for a copy of the same document to arrive from the court that is specifically for me?

    I don't know if MCOL will show if the court has received the Directions Questionnaire from Link, but just in case, the "last received document" listed is my defence.

    I have finally digitised and sanitised all documents (except the original windscreen PCN which I couldn't find) I have relating to this and you can find them here -

    drive.google.com/open?id=0BwXipWyUznKcOFJVZUJLUnJHYTQ
    (not allowed to post links so please copy and paste this into your browser.)

    Specifically, this folder contains:
    1. Notice to Keeper (from Link)
    2. Letter Before Claim (from Gladstones)
    3. Response to Letter Before Claim (from me)
    4. Response to my response (from Gladstones)
    5. Claim Form (from the Court)
    6. Part 18 Request to Link (from me)
    7. My Defence (from me)
    8. Acknowledgement of Defence (from the Court)
    9. SAR (from the DVLA)
    10. Directions Questionnaire (from Gladstones).

    My defence is probably so amateur so to make some of the regulars here cry, but sadly I didn't realise until quite late how important a document it is (namely anything you don't mention here can't be brought up in the future). So it's largely copy and pasted arguments from other defences I've found that I felt were relevant. BMPA advised I stick to a mainly narrow defence regarding the signs, as Link Parking will find that difficult to explain (unless the "marked bays" are marked with invisible paint), so I have done so. But I would appreciate any advice on any hurdles I may have inadvertently created for myself with such a sloppy defence.

    Please feel free to have a browse and of course, any advice would be gleefully accepted!
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 1st Jul 17, 6:38 PM
    • 51,473 Posts
    • 65,064 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #6
    • 1st Jul 17, 6:38 PM
    • #6
    • 1st Jul 17, 6:38 PM
    am I supposed to wait for a copy of the same document to arrive from the court that is specifically for me?
    Yes, but don't wait too long. Or download a N180 yourself from the court webpages and fill it in exactly as shown in the NEWBIES thread in the section about DQ stage.

    Here's how one poster over on PePiPoo has just dealt with this letter. Post #48 of that thread is the relevant source for you.

    http://forums.pepipoo.com/index.php?showtopic=113766&pid=1294793&st=40&#entr y1294793

    Here's you Google drive link so we can all take a look:

    https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0BwXipWyUznKcOFJVZUJLUnJHYTQ

    I wouldn't disagree with the BMPA advice, they are good.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 04-07-2017 at 1:03 AM.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 3rd Jul 17, 2:41 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    • #7
    • 3rd Jul 17, 2:41 PM
    • #7
    • 3rd Jul 17, 2:41 PM
    Will MCOL be updated if the court receives Gladstones DQ?
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 4th Jul 17, 1:04 AM
    • 51,473 Posts
    • 65,064 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    • #8
    • 4th Jul 17, 1:04 AM
    • #8
    • 4th Jul 17, 1:04 AM
    Eventually.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 4th Sep 17, 1:40 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    • #9
    • 4th Sep 17, 1:40 PM
    • #9
    • 4th Sep 17, 1:40 PM
    Update, a notice of allocation to the small claims track has been received, dated the 16th of August. (I didn't get my hands on it until the 30th of August as I was abroad until then.). My deadline for getting my documents in is the 14th of September, and the hearing date has been confirmed for the 4th of October. The claimants paid the fee on the 24th of August, so I guess I'm going to court.


    Any help with drafting the witness statement/skeleton argument would be greatly appreciated.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 4th Sep 17, 10:44 PM
    • 51,473 Posts
    • 65,064 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    You need to show us your draft, the statement of what happened, as per the examples of WS in the NEWBIES thread post #2. We need to see what evidence and WS you intend to file, to help you.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 5th Sep 17, 12:59 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    You need to show us your draft, the statement of what happened, as per the examples of WS in the NEWBIES thread post #2. We need to see what evidence and WS you intend to file, to help you.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad

    That's all in the Google Drive I posted earlier. Other evidence will probably be the photos at the beginning of this thread, plus one or two more showing different angles of the signs, maybe some wide shots, etc.
    • nosferatu1001
    • By nosferatu1001 5th Sep 17, 1:06 PM
    • 823 Posts
    • 946 Thanks
    nosferatu1001
    Show us the ws here in text form. I don't follow links to drop box etc.
    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 7th Sep 17, 11:11 PM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    As requested. see draft below:

    the Defendant, , DOB , and reside at

    and it is admitted that I was the driver of the vehicle on the day of this event.

    Save as specifically admitted in this statement the Defendant denies each and every allegation set out in the Particulars of Claim, or implied in Pre-action correspondence.

    The claim is denied in its entirety except where explicitly admitted here. I assert that I am not liable to
    the Claimant for the sum claimed, or any amount at all, for the following reasons:

    Preliminary matters:

    1. The claimant failed to include a copy of their written contract nor any detail or reason for - nor clear
    particulars pertaining to - this claim (Practice Directions 16 7.3(1) and 7C 1.4(3A) refer).

    2. The Particulars of Claim (PoC) do not meet the requirements of Practice Direction 16 7.5 as there is
    nothing which specifies how any terms were breached. Indeed the PoC are not clear and concise as is
    required by CPR 16.4 1(a) and CPR 1.4. It just vaguely states “parking charges” which does not give any indication of on what basis the claim is brought, for example whether this charge is founded upon an allegation of trespass or 'breach of contract', so I have had to cover all eventualities and this has denied me a fair chance to defend this in an informed way.

    The Claimant has not complied with the pre-court protocol. The Particulars of Claim contains no details and fails to establish a cause of action which would enable the Defendant to prepare a specific defence.
    It just states “parking charges” which does not give any indication of on what basis the claim is brought.
    There is no information regarding why the charge arose, what the original charge was, what the alleged
    contract was nor anything which could be considered a fair exchange of information. The defendant
    contacted the claimant requesting information on the parking charges in the form of a Part 18 request .
    The claimant has not responded. The defendant therefore asks that the court orders the case to be
    struck out for want of a detailed course of action and/or for the claim as having no prospect of success.
    I'd refer the court to Para 4 on non-compliance and sanction, and I'd also point out that there can be no
    reasonable excuse for the Claimant's failure to follow the Pre-action Conduct process, especially bearing in mind that the Claim was issued by their own Solicitors so they clearly had legal advice before issuing proceedings

    3. The Claimant’s solicitors are known to be a serial issuer of generic claims similar to this one, with no diligence, no scrutiny of details nor even checking for a true cause of action. HMCS have identified over 1000 similar sparse claims. I believe the term for such conduct is ‘roboclaims’ which is against the public interest, unfair on unrepresented consumers and parking companies using the small claims track as a form of aggressive, automated debt collection is not something the courts should be seen to support.

    3.a.- On the 20th September 2016 another relevant poorly pleaded private parking charge claim by
    Gladstones was struck out by District Judge Cross of St Albans County Court without a hearing
    due to their ‘roboclaim’ particulars being incoherent, failing to comply with CPR. 16.4 and
    ‘providing no facts that could give rise to any apparent claim in law’

    3.b. -On the 19th August 2016 District Judge Anson sitting at Preston County Court ruled that the very
    similar parking charge particulars of claim were deficient and failing to meet CPR 16.4 and PD 16
    paragraphs 7.3 - 7.5. He ordered the Claimant in that case to file new particulars which they failed
    to do, and the court confirmed the claim will now be struck out.

    4. Link Parking LTD is a member of the accredited trade association, the "International Parking
    Community" (IPC), membership of which allows a private parking company access to the DVLA database so that they may determine keeper details. The directors of the IPC are Will Hurley and John Davies.
    These Directors have now filed this claim because they are also the directors of Gladstones Solicitors,
    solicitors to the claimant. It is submitted that this chain of events is founded upon a conflict of interest
    and operates in breach of the CPUTRs and is contrary to good faith.

    5. The Defendant would also like to point out that the Claimant's solicitors, Gladstones Solicitors, have
    failed to abide by Practice Direction for Pre-Action Conduct (paras 13-16), by failing to respond to my
    letter sent in response to their Letter Before Claim within the deadline stipulated in my letter (14 days),
    taking just over 4 weeks to arrive.

    In further support of there being a want of cause of action:

    6. The claimant insists that an enforceable contract has been created due to signage at the site in
    question. The signage is confusing and contradictory, and therefore an enforceable contract does not
    and has not existed. The problems with this signage are detailed below.

    6.a - At the site in question, there are two sets of terms and conditions.

    6.a.1 - One set of signage (referred to henceforth as the new signs) insists on two conditions being
    fulfilled in order to forgo the charge of £100 for parking. Namely that a permit must be displayed,

    AND

    the vehicle must be parked in an allocated bay.

    The signage is clearly newer and cleaner, suggesting it has been put up well after the other set described below.

    6.a.2 - The other set of T&C signage (referred to henceforth as the old signs) insists on 1 of three
    conditions being fulfilled to avoid the same charge described in 1.a.1. The one condition of interest is:

    "Parking is permitted for: Vehicles fully displaying a valid pay-and-display ticket and parked fully within the confines of a marked bay."

    The signage is clearly older and dirtier, suggesting it has been put up well before the new set described
    above.

    6.b. - There is no indication whatsoever which set of terms and conditions is supposed to take
    precedence.

    6.c. - Signage of both sets of T&C signage look identical from a distance, even in clear weather and good lighting. The Defendant believes a reasonable person would not, on initial inspection, realise that there are two sets of T&Cs.

    7. The new T&C signage refers to the need for both conditions to be fulfilled to avoid a charge. This is
    impossible, as there are no marked allocated bays onsite.

    The parking area is comprised of mud and gravel, and is, as of 20/05/2017, undeveloped waste ground,
    with no paint or other markings to define where these alluded to bays are.

    8. The old T&C signage, specifically the section listed in 1.a.2, states the ability to pay and display a
    ticket. Thus inferring the existence of such a provision (i.e. ticket machines, payment devices, etc). There is no such provision and the Claimant will not be able to prove this.

    8.a - There are no visible details on how or where to obtain a valid pay and display ticket.

    8.b - The same argument from 7. also applies, in that there are no bays onsite for any vehicle to park in
    (the requirement for which is stipulated in 6.a.2)

    8c. When requested in the Defendant's initial appeal to Link Parking LTD (dated 19/11/2016), the
    Claimants were unable to provide any evidence of there being pay-and-display provision onsite.

    9. The defendant has email evidence showing that Horizon Properties intended for there to be a grace
    period before penalties were to be issued. The PCN was issued (06/11/16) well before this grace period
    was over (16/11/16), and through some failure of Horizon Properties, this warning was only given after
    the deadline had passed.

    10. The Claimant may try to rely upon ParkingEye Ltd v Beavis [2015] UKSC 67, ('the Beavis case') yet such an assertion is not supported by any similarity in the location, circumstances nor signage. Absent any offer or agreement on a charge, the Beavis case does not assist the claimant and in fact, supports this defence, specifically with regards with the standard of signage set as precedent by that case. The 'Beavis' sign is clear and distinctive, and specifically shows in a large contrasting font the "parking charge" to be paid as consideration. In contrast, the signage provided by Link Parking LTD contains the section relating to the "parking charge" in what can only be considered as a wholly inadequate size of font. The Beavis judgment relies on the signage being obvious and the amount of the penalty being known to the consumer so they could make their decision whether to park and risk a huge penalty. The Defendant submits that this cannot be considered to be the case with the signage used by Link Parking here in an attempt to create a contract.

    11. It is submitted that the Claimant is merely an agent acting ‘on behalf of’ the landowner who would
    be the only proper claimant. They are not the lawful occupiers of the land. Strict proof is required of a
    chain of contracts leading from the landowner to this Claimant, to allow them the right to form
    contracts and to sue in their name. Link Parking LTD has so far failed to demonstrate their legal standing to form a contract as of the date the original PCN was issued.

    11.a - The Claimant is put to proof that it has sufficient interest in the land or that there are specific
    terms in its contract to bring an action on its own behalf. As a third party agent, the Claimant may not
    pursue any charge. The Defendant has the reasonable belief that they do not have the authority to
    issue charges on this land in their own name and that they have no right to bring action regarding this
    claim.

    12. It is further submitted that the claim amount, £164.56, is unsubstantiated and bogus. The signage at
    the site in question refers to a total "parking charge" of £100, and yet the amount claimed is £64.56
    extra on top of the charge amount referenced by the signage. The signage does refer to:

    "Enforcement action may incur additional costs that will be added to the parking charge."

    The Claimant has at no time provided an explanation how the sum has been calculated, the conduct that gave rise to it or how the amount has climbed from £100 to £160 (as stipulated in the Letter Before
    Claim from Gladstones Solicitors (01/03/2017) and then to £164.56 as stated in the Claim Form N1
    issued 11/05/2017.

    As per Link Parking Ltd -v- Cowles - Chippenham County Court 24-11- 2015 ref B5GF95H3, the judge in this case determined that this cannot be proved and that there is no evidence to justify an increased charged on top of what is stated on the signage onsite. It is submitted the amount of £164.56 is an attempt to inflate the claim.

    13. It is submitted that (apart from properly incurred court fees) any added solicitors fees are simply
    numbers made up out of thin air, and are an attempt at double recovery by the Claimant, which would
    not be recoverable in any event.

    14. The Defendant also disputes that the Claimant has incurred £50 solicitor costs. The Defendant has
    the reasonable belief that the Claimant has not incurred £50 costs to pursue an alleged approx £160
    debt.

    15. The speculative claim brought is to my mind intended to intimidate a person who has no specific or
    specialised knowledge regarding the law and the legal process. Research by me has indicated that Link
    Parking LTD and their agent Gladstones Solicitors are serial offenders in this respect (see point 3.)

    With the above, The Defendant feels it is clear that the signage the Claimant attempted to use to
    enforce a contract is confusing and contradictory, and therefore inadequate to create a contract with
    any motorist. As such, The Defendant is not liable for any sum or amount claimed by the Claimant. The Defendant therefore respectfully requests the court to strike out the claim as having no basis or
    likelihood of success.

    I believe the facts contained in this Witness Statement are true.
    • KeithP
    • By KeithP 7th Sep 17, 11:27 PM
    • 4,424 Posts
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    KeithP
    Isn't that WS identical to your Defence?
    .
    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 8th Sep 17, 10:03 AM
    • 25 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Vielwerth
    Isn't that WS identical to your Defence?
    Originally posted by KeithP

    Mostly, yes. I saw the requirements for the WS on the Notice of Allocation and seemed to match. BMPA says it's a "Re-write of my Defence" but I'm not sure what should or shouldn't be rewritten. Should I be writing a whole new document?
    Last edited by Vielwerth; 08-09-2017 at 10:05 AM.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 8th Sep 17, 10:21 AM
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    Coupon-mad
    The NEWBIES thread shows you in post #2 some examples of WS.

    Strictly speaking it should be short, in the first person and no legal arguments, but enclosing all your evidence you intend to rely on for the defence (case transcripts, photos of the new and the old signs, a copy of the Beavis case sign as a comparison, etc.).
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 8th Sep 17, 10:40 AM
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    Vielwerth
    The NEWBIES thread shows you in post #2 some examples of WS.

    Strictly speaking it should be short, in the first person and no legal arguments, but enclosing all your evidence you intend to rely on for the defence (case transcripts, photos of the new and the old signs, a copy of the Beavis case sign as a comparison, etc.).
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad

    I'll have a draft by this evening.
    • Vielwerth
    • By Vielwerth 9th Sep 17, 4:37 PM
    • 25 Posts
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    Vielwerth
    Hi all,
    Here is my first draft of the witness statement. Probably a poor effort, but I have been caught out by that old chestnut of things happening whilst one is on holiday (3 weeks in Japan if anybody is interested, was very nice).

    I have to get this sent off by next week.

    One thing I have always been uncertain about, and would appreciate someone experienced confirming: do I even have a case here? Yes, the signage is awful, but I can't help thinking the worst (probably a common sight for old hands at this game).

    Anyway, here we go:

    (Forgive any misspellings etc, will polish and correct before sending. The clarifications after all "See exhibit X" are merely reminders and will be removed in the final product)

    ---------

    I am the defendant in this matter, I am unrepresented, with no experience of court procedures. If I do not set out documents in the way that the claimant may do, I trust the court will excuse my inexperience.

    In this witness statement, the facts and matters stated are true and within my own knowledge, except where indicated otherwise.

    1. On the material day in question, 6 November 2016, it is admitted that I was the registered keeper and driver of the vehicle when the parking charge was issued by Link Parking.

    2. The day the parking charge was issued was also the very first time I had ever entered/used this car park. Upon entering the car park, I noticed signage placed at various points around the car park, which I believed to be referring to purported terms and conditions for parking. It is not claimed, nor has it ever been claimed, that I did not see the signage.

    3. After exiting my vehicle, I walked across the car park to inspect one of these signs. I was immediately confused, as the signage explicitly states that in order to park here, one must be in possession of a permit, and be parked within the confines of a marked bay. (See Exhibit 1) shot of New sign

    4. I was confused because the "marked bays" alluded to by this sign was nowhere to be seen. At the time the parking charge was issued, the so-called car park was an undeveloped piece of waste ground, mostly comprised of gravel. (See Exhibit 2) wide shot of car park

    5. As recently as 20 May 2017, this so-called car park is still undeveloped, with no marked bays in sight. (See Exhibit 3) Whiteshott of car park taken on date mentioned

    6. Upon looking around the car park for the existence of these purported marked bays, I spotted another sign, mounted on the side of a decrepit-looking building. This sign looked visibly older (scuffed, dusty, dirty, etc) which piqued my interest. (See Exhibit 4) shot of old sign on side of building

    7. I went over to inspect this sign. I was then further confused, as it was evident that this time was different from the first one that I had studied. This older sign stated clearly that one would be allowed to park here, if one purchased a pay and display ticket. (See Exhibit 5) shot of old sign

    8. Upon learning of this information, I looked around the car park for the implied pay and display infrastructure, such as a ticket machine. Yet no such provision for pay-and-display existed. (See Exhibit 6) series of white shots of car park showing no pay and display provision

    9. This deepened my confusion. It was evident that there were two sets of terms and conditions at this carpark. One insisted on parking within the confines of marked bays that didn't exist, while the other implied the availability of a pay and display system, which also didn't exist. There was also no indication as to which set of terms and conditions was to take precedence.

    10. At this point I decided to enquire with my friend, Mr John X, who I was visiting on the day in question. Mr X was, at the time, a tenant of one of the flats to which this car park appeared to serve.

    11. Upon entering Mr X's flat I made enquiries regarding the management of the top part to which he was unable to answer. However a mutual friend, Mr Jerry Y, who was also visiting on that day, confidently stated that the nonexistence of the bay markings rendered the terms and conditions and unenforcible. (See witness statements for Mr X and Mr Y)

    12. I took this statement to be true in good faith, backed up by my own knowledge/confusion of the signage in the car park. Hence I left my car parked. Unfortunately, this resulted in a parking charge being issued by Link parking.

    13. As per the procedure laid out by the parking charge document (which was stuck to my car windshield) I appealed to leak parking via an email on 19 November 2016. (See Exhibit 5) initial email appeal to LP

    14. I received a response to my appeal from LP on 27 November 2016. My appeal was rejected, however I firmly believe that the particulars of my appeal were not considered or studied at all by LP and the rejection email I received was a standard form rejection, simply stating that my vehicle was not showing a valid permit. (See Exhibit 6) Rejection of appeal from LP

    15. I took no further action at this point as I genuinely believe The lacklustre legal quality of the signage at the site meant that there was no enforceable contract. This resulted in me receiving a notice to keeper from LP on 30 December 2016, And then a letter before claim from LPs solicitors, Gladstones solicitors, on 1 March 2017. (See Exhibit 7 and Exhibit 8) notice to keeper/letter before claim

    16. The letter before claim offered me an opportunity to correspond with Gladstones Solicitors, to acknowledge receipt of the letter and to give an account of the circumstances which led to a parking charge being issued. I of course took this opportunity to explain why I owed nothing and responded to the letter before claim with in the stipulated time limit of 14 days. (See Exhibit 9) response to LBC

    17. My response requested that Gladstone solicitors reply within 14 days. Gladstones solicitors response took just over 4 weeks to arrive (arriving on 13 April 2017), breaching the pre-action court contact requirements. The letter is a rejection of my claim that I owe nothing(See Exhibit 10) their response to my response

    18. Again, I believe that this letter (see Exhibit 10) is a standard form response by Gladstone solicitors, as there is no reference to any of the particulars I stipulated in my letter to them. For example, the letter from Gladstones states that their "client will reject any arguments that I did not see the sign". A rather redundant statement as my letter to them clearly states that I did see the sign(age) and that I would be not denying that any way (see Exhibit 9). I am therefore led to believe that my letter was not considered or studied in the slightest, and was in the claimants/Gladstones solicitors eyes, merely worthy of an automatic response

    19. As a result, I received a claim form from the County court business centre, issued on 11 May 2017. The particulars of claim stated within are extremely lacking in detail, merely stating that I "incurred the parking charges on 06/11/2016 for breaching the terms of parking...". As I obviously required more detail in order to file a suitable defence I sent a part 18 request to LP for further and better particulars on 24 May 2017. I also requested any documentation and relevant contracts between LP and the landowner in order to establish LPs legitimacy issue parking charges. (See Exhibit 11 and Exhibit 12) part 18 request/Proof of posting

    20. This request was not responded to, and at the time of writing I have received no correspondence at all from LP regarding this request.

    21. I believe that the circumstances and associated evidence shows that it is impossible for any user of the car park in question to meet the terms and conditions stipulated by either set of signage, namely it is impossible to park in a marked bay when such a marked bay does not exist. Henceforth, any contract purported to exist by LP does not.

    22. I also believe that LP have shown themselves to be less than responsible for putting up signage outright implying the existence of a pay and display provision, and yet failing to provide such a provision (E.g. a ticket machine), or alternatively changing the sign to one that would better match the circumstances of the car park. A sign which LP clearly have available seeing as that same signage is also installed at the car park in question.

    23. I believe the lacklustre responses (see points #14 and #18) I received to my appeal/correspondence to the claimant and their representatives, and the vague Particulars of Claim, shows that this entire affair is by design merely to scare me into paying an inflated parking charge.

    24. As a result of this entire affair, I have felt extremely anxious and rather upset that I should be pursued in this way by an organisation that doesn't even appear to read any correspondence I send. I have been given the impression that this affair will, regardless of any action I take, be concluded at a court hearing; a concept which gives me no small amount of stress, due to me never having set foot in a courthouse before and having no experience or knowledge of proper procedure. Or indeed, any legal matters whatsoever.

    I believe that the facts stated in this witness statement are true.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 9th Sep 17, 9:44 PM
    • 51,473 Posts
    • 65,064 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    One thing I have always been uncertain about, and would appreciate someone experienced confirming: do I even have a case here? Yes, the signage is awful, but I can't help thinking the worst (probably a common sight for old hands at this game).
    Yes you do.

    Two sets of signs can and should be enough to convince a decent Judge that there was no unambiguous contract, and if not, hey, no biggie, you would just pay and could still argue against the added-on random sums because the parking sum was *only* £100 and not the inflated sum they are chasing.

    Like this one from 2015 v Link, with two different sets of signs:

    http://parking-prankster.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/link-parking-v-cowles-another-big-win.html

    which has the classic line:

    ''Mr Gardner stated there were two signs visible in the distance in a picture which showed Mr Cowles car. DJ Asplin stated that although on the face of it the might be the same, they were too far away to read and might be adverts for car boot sales for all he knew.''

    and this sounds like your experience, wandering round the car park with 2 sets of signs:

    ''...when he parked he turned left, passed 4 of the 'rogue' signs which had been there for along time, were sturdy metal and were affixed to permanent structures like buildings and poles, and went into his work building. There was no reason to believe these were not the parking conditions in operation, or for him to wander round the car park looking for other terms and conditions. The Link Parking signs, in contrast, were at the other end of the car park, were made of flimsy material and attached to temporary link fencing. He had not really noticed them or felt the need to go and investigate them before this whole event happened.''

    On #13 you have 'windshield' (a USA word) and 'leak Parking'.

    Change to:

    'windscreen' and Link Parking

    and here:

    The lacklustre legal quality of the signage
    would be better as:

    The ambiguity of two different sets of signage and no marked bays
    and

    Henceforth, any contract purported to exist by LP does not.
    ...might be better with 'therefore' instead of henceforth.




    I love your use of words, it's long (maybe needs shortening) but not boring to read. Quite flowery; it sounds like one of my student offspring's personal statements for University where they lay it on thick that the subject: ''piqued my interest''!
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Marktheshark
    • By Marktheshark 9th Sep 17, 10:08 PM
    • 5,689 Posts
    • 7,158 Thanks
    Marktheshark
    Take a prepared and proofed list of your expenses to court including loss of earnings.
    Brexit will become whatever they invent it to be.
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