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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Guy
    • By MSE Guy 15th Jul 09, 4:42 PM
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    MSE Guy
    MSE news: The 95 parking ticket for taking too long to spend
    • #1
    • 15th Jul 09, 4:42 PM
    MSE news: The 95 parking ticket for taking too long to spend 15th Jul 09 at 4:42 PM
    This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

    "A motorist was smacked with a 95 parking ticket for taking "too long" spending 400 at a Homebase store. When he refused to pay, he was threatened with court action, bailiffs, a botched credit file and wage deductions.

    His crime? He'd parked for 52 minutes too long at the store, despite spending that time bolstering the retailer's profits...."

    Last edited by MSE Guy; 15-07-2009 at 5:17 PM.
Page 1
    • Idiophreak
    • By Idiophreak 15th Jul 09, 4:46 PM
    • 11,636 Posts
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    Idiophreak
    • #2
    • 15th Jul 09, 4:46 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Jul 09, 4:46 PM
    Must remember to shop at focus in future
    • trisontana
    • By trisontana 15th Jul 09, 4:58 PM
    • 9,026 Posts
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    trisontana
    • #3
    • 15th Jul 09, 4:58 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Jul 09, 4:58 PM
    As usual, the media have got it all wrong and called it a "fine".
    What part of "A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo" don't you understand?
    • peter_the_piper
    • By peter_the_piper 15th Jul 09, 5:04 PM
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    peter_the_piper
    • #4
    • 15th Jul 09, 5:04 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Jul 09, 5:04 PM
    I'd be tempted to take the table and chairs plus reporter back to homebase, ask for the manager and demand my money back as it costs so much to park there I could not now afford the dining set. That should concentrate their mind,a bit.
    I'd rather be an Optimist and be proved wrong than a Pessimist and be proved right.
    • pixwix
    • By pixwix 15th Jul 09, 5:19 PM
    • 120 Posts
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    pixwix
    • #5
    • 15th Jul 09, 5:19 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Jul 09, 5:19 PM
    I'm eternally amazed there's anyone still daft enough to shop at places like Homebase. Used to be a fairly decent DIY shop, but totally down the tubes since the takeover. It's the only shop I know where prices actually rise during their 'sales' - and that's personal observation, not pub chat. And like so many shops in that Group, the first casualty seems to be common sense PR on the part of 'managers' who seem to have not the slightest authority or common sense.

    Personally, if I was Mr Alcock, I'd print multiple copies of this whole story - one to display in my car window, and the rest to put under the windscreen wipers of other users of that carpark. And of course - just possibly - take the hint and stay out of shops like Homebase.
    • duggie1982
    • By duggie1982 15th Jul 09, 8:32 PM
    • 699 Posts
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    duggie1982
    • #6
    • 15th Jul 09, 8:32 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Jul 09, 8:32 PM
    I was amazed whilst reading this story. I do use homebase alot but I think I'll just stay away now, even though my local store does not use such shocking measures.

    Well done for getting it on MSE so more people can see how much a farce this store really is.

    P.S. No doubt your ticket will be sorted now or in the near future but its shocking to hear that you need to go through making sure that everyone can see how much this is like daylight robbery.
  • Shiny.Side.Up
    • #7
    • 15th Jul 09, 9:59 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Jul 09, 9:59 PM
    As another poster has said, I would take the full 400 of goods back and demand my money back. See how quickly they can cancel a fine then.
    Debt Free Savings Wannabe!
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    • trisontana
    • By trisontana 15th Jul 09, 10:05 PM
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    trisontana
    • #8
    • 15th Jul 09, 10:05 PM
    • #8
    • 15th Jul 09, 10:05 PM
    But why are even MSE calling this a "fine" when it isn't? I would have thought that anyone who works for MSE should have got the message now, and the fact that these "fines" are unenforceable. Parky must be rubbing his hands over this.
    What part of "A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo" don't you understand?
    • sarahg1969
    • By sarahg1969 15th Jul 09, 11:10 PM
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    sarahg1969
    • #9
    • 15th Jul 09, 11:10 PM
    • #9
    • 15th Jul 09, 11:10 PM
    Nice try, MSE, but couldn't you have got someone to give that story the once over? They are not fines.

    Bit of a wasted opportunity, really.
    • roddydogs
    • By roddydogs 16th Jul 09, 5:24 AM
    • 6,211 Posts
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    roddydogs
    He spent 2 Hrs 22Mins to buy a table and chairs---------yeh pull the other one!
    • starsailor123uk
    • By starsailor123uk 16th Jul 09, 6:27 AM
    • 74 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    starsailor123uk
    I share the sentiments of the poster above re time taken but as a married man I am aware that shopping is not as simple as a list and the quik purchase

    Hell is spent IKEA in swedish

    That said

    "Unauthorised parking is a real problem for businesses, where valuable parking spaces, reserved for genuine customers or staff, are being abused."

    if the time is not disputed and the fact is he was in the store the whole time then G24 just dont get it [ or actually they do get it 95 of it for being the !!!! turpins ]

    parking restrictions fine if applied with a element of common sense rather than a eye for the profilt and loss account.
    • hollydays
    • By hollydays 16th Jul 09, 7:02 AM
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    hollydays
    Did the person not contact the Manager in the first instance?
    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 16th Jul 09, 7:50 AM
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    MSE Martin
    A fine is defined by the dictionary is "a sum of money imposed as a penalty for an offense or dereliction". And that's exactly what happened here.

    Your point is of course that these LEGALLLY are not fines, but this isn't a legal document, its a short news story aiming to get the story across quickly. The facts these fines have no legal basis, doesn't stop them being referable too as fines in common parlance.

    The entire point of the piece is the fine was outrageous and lacked any authority, but that' doesn't stop it being what's referred to as a fine. Even the person who got the ticket says in it, "Also, the fact they lay out their letters to make them look like official fines in order to dupe susceptible, law-abiding people should be stopped."

    In journalism when you write, you try and not repeat words, its clumsy style and stops people reading and thus synonyms are important, the use of the term fine is perfectly correct and appropriate in the piece - its an emotive word and used to heighten the sense of injustice.

    Equally you could say the use of

    "His crime?"

    is legally incorrect, there was no crime this is a civil contractual dispute and not criminal, but again it is common parlance and a perfectly legitimate way to write a story of this type.

    The article explains clearly,

    "Many tickets issued by private firms are unenforceable and in many cases should be ignored, as explained in the Private Parking Ticket guide. "

    As for it being a missed opportunity, don't worry this is a small news piece, when we go large it will be with the big main guide. It's been on the site six months, but never in the weekly email yet (due to scheduling) but it will soon and will be very prominent.

    Please don't get too bogged down in the terminology and focus on the story.

    (FORGIVE TYPOS USING SPEECH DICTATION FOR RSI)
    Last edited by MSE Martin; 16-07-2009 at 7:57 AM.
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.

    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at www.moneysavingexpert.com/tips.

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    • sarahg1969
    • By sarahg1969 16th Jul 09, 8:48 AM
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    sarahg1969
    The problem is, if you refer to them as fines, then anyone who reads the article will assume they are fines. And people are scared of being fined.

    Why not add to the piece the fact that they aren't fines? It's no good saying people have been fined, but the fines aren't enforceable, because a lot of people won't understand that. They see the word fine, and that's what grabs them.

    I disagree that the use of the word fine is appropriate. I believe it misleads the reader.
    • setmefree2
    • By setmefree2 16th Jul 09, 8:56 AM
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    setmefree2
    Wow - what a disgrace and how horrible for the shopper!

    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 16th Jul 09, 9:06 AM
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    MSE Martin
    The problem is, if you refer to them as fines, then anyone who reads the article will assume they are fines. And people are scared of being fined.

    Why not add to the piece the fact that they aren't fines? It's no good saying people have been fined, but the fines aren't enforceable, because a lot of people won't understand that. They see the word fine, and that's what grabs them.

    I disagree that the use of the word fine is appropriate. I believe it misleads the reader.
    Originally posted by sarahg1969
    As a compromise we'll add in a quote from me.


    "While private parking tickets are often referred to as fines, actually they're no such thing, they're simply a company trying to use contract law to try and impose an additional charge - often they have no right to do so, and there's no basis in law for it.

    Its time for a clamp down on these clampers, and the best way is for everyone to know their rights, if you get one of these tickets, don't just 'pay up'. Read through the {private parking reclaim guide} and if you think you've been hard done by, fight it."
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.

    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at www.moneysavingexpert.com/tips.

    Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000
    • magyar
    • By magyar 16th Jul 09, 9:59 AM
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    magyar
    As a compromise we'll add in a quote from me.


    "While private parking tickets are often referred to as fines, actually they're no such thing, they're simply a company trying to use contract law to try and impose an additional charge - often they have no right to do so, and there's no basis in law for it.

    Its time for a clamp down on these clampers, and the best way is for everyone to know their rights, if you get one of these tickets, don't just 'pay up'. Read through the {private parking reclaim guide} and if you think you've been hard done by, fight it."
    Originally posted by MSE Martin

    I think that's a fair compromise, but Sarah's right above, Martin. Whilst I agree completely that certain things are 'common parlance', many of us who deal with the media frequently tear our hair our when they get certain things wrong - just because it often perpetuates a myth.

    For example, wouldn't you argue that three or four years ago people 'just accepted' that it was right to pay bank charges just because they were written that way in a contract?

    The power of this site is amazing: let's use it!
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  • davefb
    A friend was 'fined' 80 pounds after shopping at sainsbury. it's a 'combined' parking area with the supermarket and maybe 8 other shops on the area. She spent over the 2hrs in the area, so got a ticket.
    it utterly beggers belief, the signs are tiny and you assume they are for people not shopping on the area. she hadn't spent 400 pounds, 'only' perhaps 100.
    My understanding is that even after complaining they refused to back down ( i guess they subcontract to some cowboys?). Then again, because the site is 'close' to the town center, people do park on it and not shop there, so you can see the dilema the companies have. However to give a ticket to anyone who has spent their time on that site ( wether they buy anything or not) is frankly rediculous.
    • peter_the_piper
    • By peter_the_piper 16th Jul 09, 11:36 AM
    • 27,007 Posts
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    peter_the_piper
    A friend was 'fined' 80 pounds after shopping at sainsbury. it's a 'combined' parking area with the supermarket and maybe 8 other shops on the area. She spent over the 2hrs in the area, so got a ticket.
    it utterly beggers belief, the signs are tiny and you assume they are for people not shopping on the area. she hadn't spent 400 pounds, 'only' perhaps 100.
    My understanding is that even after complaining they refused to back down ( i guess they subcontract to some cowboys?). Then again, because the site is 'close' to the town center, people do park on it and not shop there, so you can see the dilema the companies have. However to give a ticket to anyone who has spent their time on that site ( wether they buy anything or not) is frankly rediculous.
    Originally posted by davefb
    I think its best to look on these tickets a requests for money. If you think its a fair request then pay them, if not, don't. Tell them to continue ignoring the begging letter.
    I'd rather be an Optimist and be proved wrong than a Pessimist and be proved right.
    • magyar
    • By magyar 16th Jul 09, 11:52 AM
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    magyar
    The problem is quite clear, it's the fact that the shops themselves don't exercise common sense.

    Near where I live there is a shopping area which is 5 mins walk to the train station. Not surprisingly, it's common to see people using it rather than paying 5 to park at the station all day.

    So I have no problem with ensuring that only bona fide shoppers use it for free, but clearly they have to exercise common sense. If someone stays for three hours and has till receipts from the store, how can any sensible store charge them?
    Says James, in my opinion, there's nothing in this world
    Beats a '52 Vincent and a red headed girl
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