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  • FIRST POST
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 13th Sep 17, 9:45 AM
    • 273Posts
    • 276Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Appeal dismissed by IAS
    • #1
    • 13th Sep 17, 9:45 AM
    Appeal dismissed by IAS 13th Sep 17 at 9:45 AM


    The adjudicator made their decision on 12/09/2017 12:16:07.

    The Appellant argues that they should not be required to pay the parking charge, as the ticket machines on site were not working correctly. The Appellant appears to suggest that as the ticket machines on site did not appear to be accepting payment they left their vehicle parked with a note displayed and went about their business. A helpline number is provided by the Operator which the Appellant appears to accept that they did not use at the time of the parking event. The Operator disputes that all of the payment options on site were not available at the time the Parking Charge Notice was issued and is able to suggest that payments were being made correctly at the time of the parking event. Even if all the machines on a particular site are not working this does not entitle the driver to free parking. The contractual terms require the driver to purchase and display a valid ticket (or make a valid online payment), otherwise by parking they agree to pay the charge. If the driver cannot purchase and display a ticket (or make a valid online payment) they can either park elsewhere, or remain parked and agree to pay the charge. It is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that the terms and conditions of parking are adhered to. By parking without a valid ticket displayed (or having made a valid online payment), regardless of the reason for doing so, the Appellant agreed to pay a charge. I have noted the images provided of the site and I am satisfied that the Appellant was made reasonably aware of the signage on display.

    Whilst having sympathy with the circumstances that the Appellant found themselves in they nevertheless chose to remain on site without purchasing or displaying a valid ticket (or making a valid online payment) and the appeal is therefore dismissed.

    Well as you told me my appeal has been dismissed by IAS. As I have mentioned on previous threads I would not have gone down this route if I had discovered this site first. I knew about MSE but did not realise that it covered so many topics.

    I will give some details about the scenario and ask if you consider that it is worth going the whole way or whether I should just cut my losses pay up and move on. If there is a 50/50 chance I will take it all the way.

    The facts of the case are as follows and I will keep as brief as I can.

    I was travelling to Burton on Trent to catch the train to Nottingham. On the way I suffered a migraine and had to stop for around 20 minutes, take some medication and wait for the aura to pass. It would not have been advisable to continue to drive as my vision is affected. I would have missed an earlier train and so I wanted to catch the 10.48 am train to Nottingham and arrived at the Derby Street car around 10.23 am which should have given me enough time to catch the train. I tried to obtain a ticket and the coins fell through the machine. Tried several times and I then noticed that the machine was displaying a sign which said that it was not operational.

    I did not just take a cursory look around but tried to find another machine but I could not find one and I walked over to some men that were working in the arches and asked them and they pointed to a machine belonging to another operator's car park.
    Contemplated moving the car but would may have missed the train (my ticket states that it was purchased at 10.39 am). I must have spent at least 10 minutes trying to obtain a ticket so I left a note on the dashboard and would have willingly paid.

    When I came back to my car later that day a ticket had been placed on my windscreen and this gave notice that I may receive a NTK in the post. I went on line immediately I got home and appealed which was rejected by Excel. The basis that they rejected my appeal was that I was not displaying a valid ticket. They also said that I could have paid by RingGo, telephoned them or moved my car. I do not possess a mobile phone or a smart phone and I had never heard of RingGo. If I had moved the car I would have missed the train and the tariff in the Station Car park is a much higher tariff and I certainly would have not been able to park in the main Station Car park as it fills up very early and I may have struggled to find a space on the Lower Station Car Park.

    With regard to the mobile phone issue I understand that Age UK have concerns about car parks that only use mobile applications as a means of payment as these disadvantage older people. There is a potential equality issue with regard to the use of a smart phone as only about one in five of my age group uses one. To offer RingGo as a means of payment when others are available is not indirect discrimination. To decline my appeal on the basis that I could use a mobile phone application when there was no other means of payment available may be indirect discrimination as it disadvantages my age group. If I had been in possession of a smart phone from all accounts it would have taken over 10 minutes to set up an account and pay.

    So Excel considered that I had three options available to me, move, pay by RingGo, or telephone them in which case they would have been able to sort something out? Excel never mentioned that I could have used another ticket machine and I had assumed that there was only one on the site as I could not find another.

    I appealed to IAS and when I saw the uploads of the site by Excel I noticed that there were other ticket machines. One by the fire door of the Travelodge and the other in the Lower Station car park where Excel have a few spaces. I went back and took some photo's of these and the one near the fire door is not signed at all. It is between two bins of the same colour and looks like a receptacle for cigarette butts. The fire door is often open and staff stand outside having a cigarette. I use the car park infrequently and have not noticed this machine before. The other machine is located at the rear of the Travelodge, is on another operator's car park and is only visible by walking the whole perimeter of the building which means entering another operator's car park. It's very ambiguous.

    There are a couple of cases that are similar to my circumstances 1) Link parking v Mr N, 2) Prendi v Camden.

    I realise that IAS are not that independent but I felt as they had not even bothered to read my comments and were totally on the side of the operator. They really are the !!!! end of the legal profession Whatever else I do I shall be writing to my MP.


    I have read the newbies and I will use the templates should I take this further. What I would really appreciate is thoughts on whether this is worth taking to court and any issues I may have missed such as size of signage. I would struggle a bit with some signage after having a migraine particularly high contrast lettering. I have to say though that I was more concerned with obtaining a ticket than anything else. Thank you.
    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 13-09-2017 at 9:52 AM.
Page 4
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 10th Jun 18, 2:31 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Deep. I've seen some the comments quoted in posts but hadn't watched the video. I have just watched it. Thank you for bringing it to my attention. I shall go through it again and makes some notes. They do mention the collection agent.


    My LBC did not come from a solicitors. It came directly from Excel Litigation department.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th Jun 18, 3:22 PM
    • 64,896 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    I am thinking about making a counter claim. I'm not sure how it works. If I lose the main claim would my counter claim automatically fall through or could I still win the counter claim? I actually think that my counter claim looks stronger than my defence to the claimant.
    Originally posted by Snakes Belly
    A counter-claim for harassment would be a struggle because the parking firm had 'reasonable cause' to get your data from the DVLA (or you gave it to them) and they are entitled to use debt collectors to pursue a 'debt', and will say they believed there was a debt owed, and they'll cite the Beavis case and will not agree they harassed you.

    Hard work. Better perhaps to defend this claim (no counter claim) and IF YOU WIN then you could start a small claim for the same price as a counter claim (25 court fee, then 25 hearing fee) and with the proof of the pudding being the court case won...


    I did notice that Excel have had issues with their meters at other sites at best this is very poor customer service and at worst it's entrapment. Interesting that Excel seem to issue a lot of tickets at the Peel Centre. Could have added to the demise of stores like Toy's R Us.
    Originally posted by Snakes Belly
    I honestly believe the rise of the parking 'industry' IS partly responsible (and not in a small way) for the demise of retail parks and large retailers.

    People who have been stung by parking firms will often NEVER go back, or if they do, they leave early, never go from shop to shop in a relaxed way making impulse buys and browsing for large purchases any more. Custom is undoubtedly lost, as is the goodwill and enjoyment in shopping and seeing/trying products in person.

    People don't realise they can still do that, simply by covering their number-plate when leaving!

    Instead, shoppers go online and browse from their armchairs, without some scum firm breathing down their necks and demanding 100 for 'staying too long on a website'!
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 10-06-2018 at 3:25 PM.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 10th Jun 18, 3:47 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Thank you CM. I think that you are right about the counter claim. I also agree about the High Street and there will be more casualties yet. Let's hope that some of the parking companies are amongst them.

    I have not used the car park in question again. I now use a small private car park that has been opened up by a landowner on a piece of land adjoining their property. There is an old telephone box where you obtain and small envelope in which you place the fee, write your reg. on the envelope and then post it into a post box. No machines or small print. It must be a nice little earner for the landowner as there is no parking management company to pay. It naturally would not work everywhere.
    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 10-06-2018 at 3:49 PM.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th Jun 18, 4:17 PM
    • 64,896 Posts
    • 77,478 Thanks
    Coupon-mad
    That is a perfect little income stream for that landowner and very fair that they do this, fair to drivers and fair to them. Wish more would see that if you treat drivers with respect and don't fine them, you might actually make your land work for you.

    Astonishing how many people, landowners, retailers, hotels, Motorway Services, ports, railway TOCs and the Government, believe the crap about the Country being full of 'rogue parkers' about to park on your drive and go off all day.

    This Country is plagued by rogue parking firms, not rogue parkers.

    The PPCs even cite 'blue badge abuse' to prop up their outrageous scams, even though that is Council only and has precisely NOTHING to do with them at all.

    In fact a BB 'abuser' in the true sense (a person using their dead grandma's badge, for example) would be allowed to park with impunity by a scumbag parking firm, whereas a real disabled needy person with a medical condition (and a slipped BB they knocked off their dash because they are unsteady when alighting) gets fined 100 with no chance of appeal.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 23rd Jul 18, 12:34 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    I responded to the LBC sent by Excel within the timeframe which was by the 12/6/2018. I posted the letter on the 7/6/2018 first class post and obtained a proof of posting. In my rebuttal letter I requested further information on several matters. Excel have failed to respond within the 30 days. The Protocol states,

    5.2 If the debtor requests a document or information, the creditor must
    1. provide the document or information; or
    2. explain why the document or information is unavailable,
    within 30 days of receipt of the request.


    My request has now been well over 30 days and I have not received any information from Excel. If they have not got the authority from the landowner then are their actions 'ultra vires' beyond their powers?


    Also should I send another letter requesting the information again? Really now I wish they would either put up or shut up.









    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 23-07-2018 at 12:41 PM.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 23rd Jul 18, 12:40 PM
    • 64,896 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    I'd send an email (no more stamps) saying what's happened and that you now reasonably consider they have dropped the case, and you will forward the entire exchange to your MP to complain about the industry's harassment and extortion operated against ordinary people.

    I still expect they will sue. But your responses will show you were active in pre-court exchanges.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 23rd Jul 18, 12:52 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Thank you. There are quite a number of complaints on Trip Advisor about this car park which will add to my case. Permits are issued (not in my case) but these permits are not valid during the day so visitors to the Travelodge have to put a ticket on in the morning. Needless to say there is a man waiting to pounce on anyone who exceeds their permit.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 5th Aug 18, 10:37 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    'I refer to your Letter before claim dated 15th May 2018 and my rebuttal letter 7th June 2017 (proof of posting obtained).

    Within my letter I requested information from you which has not been forthcoming. I refer you to section 5 of the Protocol, Disclosure of Documents which states:-

    5.1 Early disclosure of documents and relevant information can help to clarify or resolve any issues in dispute. Where any aspect of the debt is disputed (including the amount, interest, charges, time for payment, or the creditor;s compliance with relevant statutes and regulations), the parties should exchange information and disclose documents sufficient to enable them to understand each others position.

    5.2 If the debtor requests a document or information, the creditor must

    • (a) provide the document or information; or
    • (b) explain why the document or information is unavailable,
      Within 30 days of receipt of the request.

      I have not received any of the information requested in my letter of the 7th June including the authority from the landowner to pursue this claim though the courts.

      I now reasonably consider that you have dropped the case.

      Also be aware that I shall be forwarding the entire exchange to my MP to complain about the industry's harassment and extortion operated against ordinary people.'

    I sent the above letter to Excel yesterday after waiting a few more days to see if there was a response to my rebuttal letter. It has been well over 30 days since they would have received my letter in response to the LBC. If they do take me to court am I right in thinking that I can ask for a stay until the information is provided? As they haven't complied then my understanding is that there is an impact on costs. Not sure how that works.

    Coupon Mad said to go through the COP with a tooth comb which I did. Also said to send a robust rebuttal letter, which I also did. I don't know if it was robust enough to see it off. I did wonder if they don't have authority from the landowner.
    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 05-08-2018 at 11:07 AM.
    • Fruitcake
    • By Fruitcake 5th Aug 18, 11:16 AM
    • 38,081 Posts
    • 85,419 Thanks
    Fruitcake
    Have you had a rely from your MP yet, and/or a rely from the MP for the constituency where the alleged event took place?
    If they are different you should have complained to both, telling them about the loss of income to local business and the trapadvisor comments.
    I married my cousin. I had to...
    I don't have a sister.

    All my screwdrivers are cordless.
    "You're Safety Is My Primary Concern Dear" - Laks
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 5th Aug 18, 12:16 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    I have not written to my MP yet but I intend to and I will also forward a letter to the MP where the car park is located. Have also considered writing to the landowner if I can find out who they are. They may be located in the US. There are 18 comments on Trip Advisor about this car park and I shall be including them all in my defence. This is an extract from one of them.

    'Whilst I got sympathy from Travelodge after complaining, they said it was a matter for the landlord and private parking company. My issue is that Travelodge (as majority leasor of the site) must have some influence on the behaviour of the parking attendants (it should be brought up on lease renewal) as otherwise it will reduce patronage of the hotel in favour of others in the area without such issues (such as the Premier Inn). If travelling by Rail its fine - otherwise use somewhere outside the centre'

    The car park is not purely for visitors to the Travelodge. Rail users (like myself) also use the car park. When the car park first opened they undercut the station car parks to attract people. The income from the car park lease is paid to the Travelodge but neither Excel or the Travelodge own the land.
    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 05-08-2018 at 12:39 PM.
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 5th Aug 18, 4:49 PM
    • 3,784 Posts
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    IamEmanresu
    The income from the car park lease is paid to the Travelodge
    Are you sure about that. AFAIR there is quite a complex set of arrangements where a Private Equity company own the lot and lease the various bits to operators based on their specialities. So Travelodge rent the hotel bits and Excel lease the car park.

    The local council will tell you who pays the rates as it is usually a good indication but not 100%. Property leases can be complex.
    If you want to win - avoid losing first. Here are a few examples
    1. Failing to RTFM - the Civil Procedure Rules
    2. Failing to Acknowledge or Defend- See #1
    3. Failing to RTFCL - the Court letters
    4. Template defences that say nothing - See #1
    5. Forgetting about the Witness Statement - See #3
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 6th Aug 18, 5:25 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Thank you for your reply. I have been trying to get my head around the ownership of the land and it's quite complex. Just to give you some background the building (hotel) is an old grain warehouse that would have originally belonged to the railway. On the same site there are offices, workshops and a sandwich shop as well as car parking. These are all subject to individual leases.

    As part of a restructure the lease to this Travelodge was put up for sale but would still continue with the Travelodge name. Some of hotels that were sold are now operated on a franchise basis. Within the sale of the lease income from the associated buildings and the car park were itemised in the projected income. The sale of the lease split the sale price into sale of the hotel lease and sale of associated leases. 'We are seeking offers in excess of 3,150,000 in respect of the Travelodge income. With regards to the remaining income and potential income of 55,000 we are seeking an additional 520,000'. The Excel lease is included in the 55,000 additional income.

    I know what you are saying though because I have assumed that whoever purchased the Hotel lease would have purchased the rest but they may not have done. I also think (from looking at accounts) that the sale of the lease was not by the landowner but by the existing leaseholder (Travelodge UK Ltd ).

    Just to further complicate matters at the back of the building there are car parking bays next to each other that belong to different operators, Station in white and Excel in yellow. Different machines on the same car park.

    If and when they take me to court I think I will get the information from the Land Registry to see who really owns this land. Originally it would have belonged to the railway. Workshops are actually in the arches of the railway bridge.







    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 06-08-2018 at 6:16 AM.
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 6th Aug 18, 6:01 AM
    • 3,784 Posts
    • 6,230 Thanks
    IamEmanresu
    I think I will get the information from the Land Registry to see who really owns this land.
    LR tells you who owns but rates (Non-Domestic Rates) tells you who occupies. Occupiers usually are the ones that hire PPC's. In any event, most Excel sites it is Excel that pays the rates as occupiers.
    If you want to win - avoid losing first. Here are a few examples
    1. Failing to RTFM - the Civil Procedure Rules
    2. Failing to Acknowledge or Defend- See #1
    3. Failing to RTFCL - the Court letters
    4. Template defences that say nothing - See #1
    5. Forgetting about the Witness Statement - See #3
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 6th Aug 18, 6:52 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    Thanks for your help. I have checked the post code for business rates and cannot see the car park mentioned. Everything else has a rateable value, Hotel, workshops, stores, arches etc. The Travelodge is listed as Hotel and Premises.

    The following was taken from the sale document. Excel Parking Services 10 year lease from Feb/March 20,000 per annum, 95 spaces. The income forms part of the overall projected income for the Travelodge. Does having a lease mean that there is a proprietary interest or do they still require authority from the landowner to pursue the claim?








    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 06-08-2018 at 7:31 AM.
    • nosferatu1001
    • By nosferatu1001 6th Aug 18, 11:54 AM
    • 4,203 Posts
    • 5,035 Thanks
    nosferatu1001
    Just give the councils NDR dept a call. theyre not uslaly as busy as CT depts so can answer the phone 1 in 2 goes...

    Get onto that MP complaint, today. Stop prevaricating on that. Get it in motion.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 7th Aug 18, 10:43 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    nostferatu10, I have telephoned the NDR department today and they have no record of Excel occupying the car park. The person that I spoke to thought that the car park was part of the Travelodge.

    Just as a matter of interest regarding Excel and faulty equipment I read some comments from employees and ex employees of Excel. Simon Renshaw-Smith is not exactly George Cadbury. I actually started to feel sorry for the employees. At least I only got a parking ticket.
    • nosferatu1001
    • By nosferatu1001 7th Aug 18, 11:08 AM
    • 4,203 Posts
    • 5,035 Thanks
    nosferatu1001
    They will know, for a fact, who pays rates on that car park.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 7th Aug 18, 11:37 AM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    They have no record of Excel paying NDR on that postcode.
    • Le_Kirk
    • By Le_Kirk 7th Aug 18, 11:50 AM
    • 3,428 Posts
    • 2,391 Thanks
    Le_Kirk
    They have no record of Excel paying NDR on that postcode.
    Originally posted by Snakes Belly
    They will know, for a fact, who pays rates on that car park.
    Originally posted by nosferatu1001
    Then who does? should be the next question.
    • Snakes Belly
    • By Snakes Belly 7th Aug 18, 12:17 PM
    • 273 Posts
    • 276 Thanks
    Snakes Belly
    It must be the Travelodge because on the Government site that lists all the rateable values within that postcode the Travelodge is the only possible property and is described as Hotel and Premises. The Travelodge is leased. It no longer belongs to Travelodge but still retains the name. More like a franchise.

    This Travelodge has a contract with Excel but I am not sure of the nature of the contract/lease as I have only seen this information in an estate agent's brochure. The initial contract with Excel would have been with Travelodge UK Ltd.
    Last edited by Snakes Belly; 07-08-2018 at 12:21 PM.
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