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  • FIRST POST
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 10th Apr 18, 11:42 AM
    • 37Posts
    • 5Thanks
    topcarp
    PCN Premier Park POPLA Appeal
    • #1
    • 10th Apr 18, 11:42 AM
    PCN Premier Park POPLA Appeal 10th Apr 18 at 11:42 AM
    Hi all, recently I received not one but two PCN's from the lovely people at Premier Park and as per the Newbies thread followed everything in requesting an appeal to POPLA. This is now where I am stumped as I'm not quiet sure what to say. The PCN states that the reason is Not Parked Wholly Within Bay. The vehicle was parked between two sets of parking bays and not in an area marked as a no parking zone or roadway, furthermore I was told several days before the first PCN is dated, by an employee of the operator that the location the vehicle was parked in was ok and not breaking any rules therefore several days later the vehicle was parked there and got a PCN. There are several areas in the car park not marked out at all as parking spaces with white lines but these are legal bays as well as areas next to blue badge areas that are also not marked but are legal spaces as well.

    Please help!
Page 3
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 10:09 AM
    • 37 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    topcarp
    PCN Premier Park POPLA Draft
    Hi all, here is my draft for my POPLA appeal due to a PCN by Premier Park LTD. If any of our experts have any feedback please let me know.

    Here is the back story recently I received not one but two PCN's from the lovely people at Premier Park and as per the Newbies thread followed everything in requesting an appeal to POPLA. This is now where I am stumped as I'm not quiet sure what to say. The PCN states that the reason is Not Parked Wholly Within Bay. The vehicle was parked between two sets of parking bays and not in an area marked as a no parking zone or roadway, furthermore I was told several days before the first PCN is dated, by an employee of the operator that the location the vehicle was parked in was ok and not breaking any rules therefore several days later the vehicle was parked there and got a PCN. There are several areas in the car park not marked out at all as parking spaces with white lines but these are legal bays as well as areas next to blue badge areas that are also not marked but are legal spaces as well.

    As well as this it was also noticed that the PCN incident date is 29/01/18 and issue date is 13/2/18, 15 days apart, this means that it is a non POFA one, and arrived too late for keeper liability!

    Appeal Below

    Dear POPLA Adjudicator,

    I am the registered keeper of vehicle **** *** and am appealing a parking charge from Premier Park LTD on the following points:

    1. A compliant Notice to Keeper was never served - no Keeper Liability can apply.

    2. The operator has not shown that the individual who it is pursuing is in fact the driver who was liable for the charge

    3. No evidence of Landowner Authority - the operator is put to strict proof of full compliance with the BPA Code of Practice

    4. The signs in this car park are not prominent, clear or legible from all parking spaces and there is insufficient notice of the sum of the parking charge itself

    1. A compliant Notice to Keeper was never served - no Keeper Liability can apply.

    This operator has not fulfilled the 'second condition' for keeper liability as defined in Schedule 4, Paragraph 4 of the POFA, an operator can only establish the right to recover any unpaid parking charges from the keeper of a vehicle if certain conditions must be met as stated in paragraphs 5, 6, 11, and 12. Premier Park LTD have failed to fulfil the conditions which state that an operator must have provided the keeper with a Notice to Keeper (NTK) in accordance with paragraph 9, which stipulates as mandatory, a set timeline and wording:-

    The notice must be given by:
    (a) handing it to the keeper, or leaving it at a current address for service for the keeper, within the relevant period; or
    (b) sending it by post to a current address for service for the keeper so that it is delivered to that address within the relevant period.

    The applicable section here is (b) because the Parking Charge Notice/NTK that I have received was delivered by post. Furthermore, paragraph 9(5) states:

    "The relevant period for the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) is the period of 14 days beginning with the day after that on which the specified period of parking ended."

    In fact, this NTK arrived 15 days after the alleged event. This means that Premier Park LTD have failed to act within the 14 day relevant period. The date of the event in question was on xxxx. The NTK was received on xxxx, though issued on xxxx.

    There has been no proof of the driver of the vehicle, and therefore Premier Park LTD have failed to provide a POFA compliant NTK.

    The operator has not shown that the individual who it is pursuing is in fact the driver who may have been potentially liable for the charge

    In cases with a keeper appellant, yet no POFA 'keeper liability' to rely upon, POPLA must first consider whether they are confident that the Assessor knows who the driver is, based on the evidence received. No presumption can be made about liability whatsoever. A vehicle can be driven by any person (with the consent of the owner) as long as the driver is insured. There is no dispute that the driver was entitled to drive the car and I can confirm that they were, but I am exercising my right not to name that person.

    In this case, no other party apart from an evidenced driver can be told to pay. As there has been no admission regarding who was driving, and no evidence has been produced, it has been held by POPLA on numerous occasions, that a parking charge cannot be enforced against a keeper without a valid NTK.

    As the keeper of the vehicle, it is my right to choose not to name the driver, yet still not be lawfully held liable if an operator is not using or complying with Schedule 4. This applies regardless of when the first appeal was made and regardless of whether a purported 'NTK' was served or not, because the fact remains I am only appealing as the keeper and ONLY Schedule 4 of the POFA (or evidence of who was driving) can cause a keeper appellant to be deemed to be the liable party.

    The burden of proof rests with the Operator to show that (as an individual) I have personally not complied with terms in place on the land and show that I am personally liable for their parking charge. They cannot.

    Furthermore, the vital matter of full compliance with the POFA was confirmed by parking law expert barrister, Henry Greenslade, the previous POPLA Lead Adjudicator, in 2015:
    Understanding keeper liability
    'There appears to be continuing misunderstanding about Schedule 4. Provided certain conditions are strictly complied with, it provides for recovery of unpaid parking charges from the keeper of the vehicle.

    There is no 'reasonable presumption' in law that the registered keeper of a vehicle is the driver. Operators should never suggest anything of the sort. Further, a failure by the recipient of a notice issued under Schedule 4 to name the driver, does not of itself mean that the recipient has accepted that they were the driver at the material time. Unlike, for example, a Notice of Intended Prosecution where details of the driver of a vehicle must be supplied when requested by the police, pursuant to Section 172 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, a keeper sent a Schedule 4 notice has no legal obligation to name the driver. [...] If {POFA 2012 Schedule 4 is} not complied with then keeper liability does not generally pass.'

    Therefore, no lawful right exists to pursue unpaid parking charges from myself as keeper of the vehicle, where an operator cannot transfer the liability for the charge using the POFA.

    This exact finding was made in 6061796103 against ParkingEye in September 2016, where POPLA Assessor Carly Law found:
    ''I note the operator advises that it is not attempting to transfer the liability for the charge using the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and so in mind, the operator continues to hold the driver responsible. As such, I must first consider whether I am confident that I know who the driver is, based on the evidence received. After considering the evidence, I am unable to confirm that the appellant is in fact the driver. As such, I must allow the appeal on the basis that the operator has failed to demonstrate that the appellant is the driver and therefore liable for the charge. As I am allowing the appeal on this basis, I do not need to consider the other grounds of appeal raised by the appellant. Accordingly, I must allow this appeal.''

    The signs in this car park are not prominent, clear or legible from all parking spaces and there is insufficient notice of the sum of the parking charge itself

    I note that within the Protection of Freedoms Act (POFA) 2012 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 2012 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''.

    Even in circumstances where POFA 2012 does not apply, I believe this to be a reasonable standard to use when making my own assessment, as appellant, of the signage in place at the location. Having considered the signage in place at this particular site against the requirements of Section 18 of the BPA Code of Practice and POFA 2012, I am of the view that the signage at the site - given the minuscule font size of the £sum, which is illegible in most photographs and does not appear at all at the entrance - is NOT sufficient to bring the parking charge (i.e. the sum itself) to the attention of the motorist.

    There was no contract nor agreement on the 'parking charge' at all. It is submitted that the driver did not have a fair opportunity to read about any terms involving this huge charge, which is out of all proportion and not saved by the dissimilar 'ParkingEye Ltd v Beavis' case.

    In the Beavis case, which turned on specific facts relating only to the signs at that site and the unique interests and intentions of the landowners, the signs were unusually clear and not a typical example for this notorious industry. The Supreme Court were keen to point out the decision related to that car park and those facts only:

    http://imgur.com/a/AkMCN

    In the Beavis case, the £85 charge itself was in the largest font size with a contrasting colour background and the terms were legible, fairly concise and unambiguous. There were 'large lettering' signs at the entrance and all around the car park, according to the Judges.

    Here is the 'Beavis case' sign as a comparison to the signs under dispute in this case:

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-eYdphoIIDgE/VpbCpfSTaiI/AAAAAAAAE10/5uFjL528DgU/s640/Parking%2Bsign_001.jpg

    This case, by comparison, does not demonstrate an example of the 'large lettering' and 'prominent signage' that impressed the Supreme Court Judges and swayed them into deciding that in the specific car park in the Beavis case alone, a contract and 'agreement on the charge' existed.

    Here, the signs are sporadically placed, indeed obscured and hidden in some areas. They are unremarkable, not immediately obvious as parking terms and the wording is mostly illegible, being crowded and cluttered with a lack of white space as a background. It is indisputable that placing letters too close together in order to fit more information into a smaller space can drastically reduce the legibility of a sign, especially one which must be read BEFORE the action of parking and leaving the car.

    It is vital to observe, since 'adequate notice of the parking charge' is mandatory under the POFA Schedule 4 and the BPA Code of Practice, these signs do not clearly mention the parking charge which is hidden in small print (and does not feature at all on some of the signs). Areas of this site are unsigned and there are no full terms displayed - i.e. with the sum of the parking charge itself in large lettering - at the entrance either, so it cannot be assumed that a driver drove past and could read a legible sign, nor parked near one.

    This case is more similar to the signage in POPLA decision 5960956830 on 2.6.16, where the Assessor Rochelle Merritt found as fact that signs in a similar size font in a busy car park where other unrelated signs were far larger, was inadequate:

    ''the signage is not of a good enough size to afford motorists the chance to read and understand the terms and conditions before deciding to remain in the car park. [...] In addition the operators signs would not be clearly visible from a parking space [...] The appellant has raised other grounds for appeal but I have not dealt with these as I have allowed the appeal.''

    From the evidence I have seen so far, the terms appear to be displayed inadequately, in letters no more than about half an inch high, approximately. I put the operator to strict proof as to the size of the wording on their signs and the size of lettering for the most onerous term, the parking charge itself.

    The letters seem to be no larger than .40 font size going by this guide:

    http://www-archive.mozilla.org/newlayout/testcases/css/sec526pt2.htm

    As further evidence that this is inadequate notice, Letter Height Visibility is discussed here:

    http://www.signazon.com/help-center/sign-letter-height-visibility-chart.aspx

    ''When designing your sign, consider how you will be using it, as well as how far away the readers you want to impact will be. For example, if you are placing a sales advertisement inside your retail store, your text only needs to be visible to the people in the store. 1-2' letters (or smaller) would work just fine. However, if you are hanging banners and want drivers on a nearby highway to be able to see them, design your letters at 3' or even larger.''

    ...and the same chart is reproduced here:

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/gds/Outdoor-Dimensional-Sign-Letter-Best-Viewing-Distance-/10000000175068392/g.html

    ''When designing an outdoor sign for your business keep in mind the readability of the letters. Letters always look smaller when mounted high onto an outdoor wall''.

    ''...a guideline for selecting sign letters. Multiply the letter height by 10 and that is the best viewing distance in feet. Multiply the best viewing distance by 4 and that is the max viewing distance.''

    So, a letter height of just half an inch, showing the terms and the 'charge' and placed high on a wall or pole or buried in far too crowded small print, is woefully inadequate in an outdoor car park. Given that letters look smaller when high up on a wall or pole, as the angle renders the words less readable due to the perspective and height, you would have to stand right in front of it and still need a stepladder (and perhaps a torch and/or magnifying glass) to be able to read the terms.

    Under Lord Denning's Red Hand Rule, the charge (being 'out of all proportion' with expectations of drivers in this car park and which is the most onerous of terms) should have been effectively: 'in red letters with a red hand pointing to it' - i.e. VERY clear and prominent with the terms in large lettering, as was found to be the case in the car park in 'Beavis'. A reasonable interpretation of the 'red hand rule' and the 'signage visibility distance' tables above and the BPA Code of Practice, taking all information into account, would require a parking charge and the terms to be displayed far more transparently, on a lower sign and in far larger lettering, with fewer words and more 'white space' as background contrast. Indeed in the Consumer Rights Act 2015 there is a 'Requirement for transparency':

    (1) A trader must ensure that a written term of a consumer contract, or a consumer notice in writing, is transparent.
    (2) A consumer notice is transparent for the purposes of subsection (1) if it is expressed in plain and intelligible language and it is legible.

    The Beavis case signs not being similar to the signs in this appeal at all, I submit that the persuasive case law is in fact 'Vine v London Borough of Waltham Forest [2000] EWCA Civ 106' about a driver not seeing the terms and consequently, she was NOT deemed bound by them.

    This judgment is binding case law from the Court of Appeal and supports my argument, not the operator's case:

    http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2000/106.html

    This was a victory for the motorist and found that, where terms on a sign are not seen and the area is not clearly marked/signed with prominent terms, the driver has not consented to - and cannot have 'breached' - an unknown contract because there is no contract capable of being established. The driver in that case (who had not seen any signs/lines) had NOT entered into a contract. The recorder made a clear finding of fact that the plaintiff, Miss Vine, did not see a sign because the area was not clearly marked as 'private land' and the signs were obscured/not adjacent to the car and could not have been seen and read from a driver's seat before parking.

    So, for this appeal, I put this operator to strict proof of where the car was parked and (from photos taken in the same lighting conditions) how their signs appeared on that date, at that time, from the angle of the driver's perspective. Equally, I require this operator to show how the entrance signs appear from a driver's seat, not stock examples of 'the sign' in isolation/close-up. I submit that full terms simply cannot be read from a car before parking and mere 'stock examples' of close-ups of the (alleged) signage terms will not be sufficient to disprove this.

    No evidence of Landowner Authority - the operator is put to strict proof of full compliance with the BPA Code of Practice

    As this operator does not have proprietary interest in the land then I require that they produce an unredacted copy of the contract with the landowner.

    The contract and any 'site agreement' or 'User Manual' setting out details - such as any 'genuine customer' or 'genuine resident' exemptions or any site occupier's 'right of veto' charge cancellation rights, and of course all enforcement dates/times/days, and the boundary of the site - is key evidence to define what this operator is authorised to do, and when/where.

    It cannot be assumed, just because an agent is contracted to merely put some signs up and issue Parking Charge Notices, that the agent is authorised on the material date, to make contracts with all or any category of visiting drivers and/or to enforce the charge in court in their own name (legal action regarding land use disputes generally being a matter for a landowner only).

    Witness statements are not sound evidence of the above, often being pre-signed, generic documents not even identifying the case in hand or even the site rules. A witness statement might in some cases be accepted by POPLA but in this case I suggest it is unlikely to sufficiently evidence the definition of the services provided by each party to the agreement.

    Nor would it define vital information such as charging days/times, any exemption clauses, grace periods (which I believe may be longer than the bare minimum times set out in the BPA CoP) and basic but crucial information such as the site boundary and any bays where enforcement applies/does not apply. Not forgetting evidence of the only restrictions which the landowner has authorised can give rise to a charge, as well as the date that the parking contract began, and when it runs to, or whether it runs in perpetuity, and of course, who the signatories are: name/job title/employer company, and whether they are authorised by the landowner to sign a binding legal agreement.

    Paragraph 7 of the BPA CoP defines the mandatory requirements and I put this operator to strict proof of full compliance:

    7.2 If the operator wishes to take legal action on any outstanding parking charges, they must ensure that they have the written authority of the landowner (or their appointed agent) prior to legal action being taken.

    7.3 The written authorisation must also set out:

    a. the definition of the land on which you may operate, so that the boundaries of the land can be clearly defined

    b. any conditions or restrictions on parking control and enforcement operations, including any restrictions on hours of operation

    c. any conditions or restrictions on the types of vehicles that may, or may not, be subject to parking control and enforcement

    d. who has the responsibility for putting up and maintaining signs

    e. the definition of the services provided by each party to the agreement
    Last edited by topcarp; 01-05-2018 at 10:56 AM.
    • Umkomaas
    • By Umkomaas 1st May 18, 10:56 AM
    • 19,458 Posts
    • 30,744 Thanks
    Umkomaas
    It won't be dealt with here, cut adrift and in isolation from all the facts of your original case. No one is going to be skipping back and forth between different threads to understand background and context.

    EDIT TO ADD

    I've just read the latest post of your original thread and I think you have misunderstood nosferatu's advice to put this in a new post. It was saying to put in a new post within your existing thread, not start a brand new thread with it in.

    So copy and paste this appeal back into your original thread and let this one die please.
    Last edited by Umkomaas; 01-05-2018 at 11:02 AM.
    The fact that I have commented on your thread does not mean I have become your personal adviser. A long list of subsequent questions addressed for my personal attention is unlikely to receive a reply.
    Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 11:18 AM
    • 37 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    topcarp
    Following on from all the advice given and with a little bit of background info from previous posts. Please help with any missing information as this is due tomorrow!

    Here is the back story recently I received not one but two PCN's from the lovely people at Premier Park and as per the Newbies thread followed everything in requesting an appeal to POPLA. This is now where I am stumped as I'm not quiet sure what to say. The PCN states that the reason is Not Parked Wholly Within Bay. The vehicle was parked between two sets of parking bays and not in an area marked as a no parking zone or roadway, furthermore I was told several days before the first PCN is dated, by an employee of the operator that the location the vehicle was parked in was ok and not breaking any rules therefore several days later the vehicle was parked there and got a PCN. There are several areas in the car park not marked out at all as parking spaces with white lines but these are legal bays as well as areas next to blue badge areas that are also not marked but are legal spaces as well.

    As well as this it was also noticed that the PCN incident date is 29/01/18 and issue date is 13/2/18, 15 days apart, this means that it is a non POFA one, and arrived too late for keeper liability!

    Appeal Below

    Dear POPLA Adjudicator,

    I am the registered keeper of vehicle **** *** and am appealing a parking charge from Premier Park LTD on the following points:

    1. A compliant Notice to Keeper was never served - no Keeper Liability can apply.

    2. The operator has not shown that the individual who it is pursuing is in fact the driver who was liable for the charge

    3. No evidence of Landowner Authority - the operator is put to strict proof of full compliance with the BPA Code of Practice

    4. The signs in this car park are not prominent, clear or legible from all parking spaces and there is insufficient notice of the sum of the parking charge itself

    1. A compliant Notice to Keeper was never served - no Keeper Liability can apply.

    This operator has not fulfilled the 'second condition' for keeper liability as defined in Schedule 4, Paragraph 4 of the POFA, an operator can only establish the right to recover any unpaid parking charges from the keeper of a vehicle if certain conditions must be met as stated in paragraphs 5, 6, 11, and 12. Premier Park LTD have failed to fulfil the conditions which state that an operator must have provided the keeper with a Notice to Keeper (NTK) in accordance with paragraph 9, which stipulates as mandatory, a set timeline and wording:-

    The notice must be given by:
    (a) handing it to the keeper, or leaving it at a current address for service for the keeper, within the relevant period; or
    (b) sending it by post to a current address for service for the keeper so that it is delivered to that address within the relevant period.

    The applicable section here is (b) because the Parking Charge Notice/NTK that I have received was delivered by post. Furthermore, paragraph 9(5) states:

    "The relevant period for the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) is the period of 14 days beginning with the day after that on which the specified period of parking ended."

    In fact, this NTK was issued 15 days after the alleged event. This means that Premier Park LTD have failed to act within the 14 day relevant period. The date of the event in question was on xxxx and the NTK was issued on xxxx.

    There has been no proof of the driver of the vehicle, and therefore Premier Park LTD have failed to provide a POFA compliant NTK.

    The operator has not shown that the individual who it is pursuing is in fact the driver who may have been potentially liable for the charge

    In cases with a keeper appellant, yet no POFA 'keeper liability' to rely upon, POPLA must first consider whether they are confident that the Assessor knows who the driver is, based on the evidence received. No presumption can be made about liability whatsoever. A vehicle can be driven by any person (with the consent of the owner) as long as the driver is insured. There is no dispute that the driver was entitled to drive the car and I can confirm that they were, but I am exercising my right not to name that person.

    In this case, no other party apart from an evidenced driver can be told to pay. As there has been no admission regarding who was driving, and no evidence has been produced, it has been held by POPLA on numerous occasions, that a parking charge cannot be enforced against a keeper without a valid NTK.

    As the keeper of the vehicle, it is my right to choose not to name the driver, yet still not be lawfully held liable if an operator is not using or complying with Schedule 4. This applies regardless of when the first appeal was made and regardless of whether a purported 'NTK' was served or not, because the fact remains I am only appealing as the keeper and ONLY Schedule 4 of the POFA (or evidence of who was driving) can cause a keeper appellant to be deemed to be the liable party.

    The burden of proof rests with the Operator to show that (as an individual) I have personally not complied with terms in place on the land and show that I am personally liable for their parking charge. They cannot.

    Furthermore, the vital matter of full compliance with the POFA was confirmed by parking law expert barrister, Henry Greenslade, the previous POPLA Lead Adjudicator, in 2015:
    Understanding keeper liability
    'There appears to be continuing misunderstanding about Schedule 4. Provided certain conditions are strictly complied with, it provides for recovery of unpaid parking charges from the keeper of the vehicle.

    There is no 'reasonable presumption' in law that the registered keeper of a vehicle is the driver. Operators should never suggest anything of the sort. Further, a failure by the recipient of a notice issued under Schedule 4 to name the driver, does not of itself mean that the recipient has accepted that they were the driver at the material time. Unlike, for example, a Notice of Intended Prosecution where details of the driver of a vehicle must be supplied when requested by the police, pursuant to Section 172 of the Road Traffic Act 1988, a keeper sent a Schedule 4 notice has no legal obligation to name the driver. [...] If {POFA 2012 Schedule 4 is} not complied with then keeper liability does not generally pass.'

    Therefore, no lawful right exists to pursue unpaid parking charges from myself as keeper of the vehicle, where an operator cannot transfer the liability for the charge using the POFA.

    This exact finding was made in 6061796103 against ParkingEye in September 2016, where POPLA Assessor Carly Law found:
    ''I note the operator advises that it is not attempting to transfer the liability for the charge using the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and so in mind, the operator continues to hold the driver responsible. As such, I must first consider whether I am confident that I know who the driver is, based on the evidence received. After considering the evidence, I am unable to confirm that the appellant is in fact the driver. As such, I must allow the appeal on the basis that the operator has failed to demonstrate that the appellant is the driver and therefore liable for the charge. As I am allowing the appeal on this basis, I do not need to consider the other grounds of appeal raised by the appellant. Accordingly, I must allow this appeal.''

    The signs in this car park are not prominent, clear or legible from all parking spaces and there is insufficient notice of the sum of the parking charge itself

    I note that within the Protection of Freedoms Act (POFA) 2012 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 2012 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''.

    Even in circumstances where POFA 2012 does not apply, I believe this to be a reasonable standard to use when making my own assessment, as appellant, of the signage in place at the location. Having considered the signage in place at this particular site against the requirements of Section 18 of the BPA Code of Practice and POFA 2012, I am of the view that the signage at the site - given the minuscule font size of the £sum, which is illegible in most photographs and does not appear at all at the entrance - is NOT sufficient to bring the parking charge (i.e. the sum itself) to the attention of the motorist.

    There was no contract nor agreement on the 'parking charge' at all. It is submitted that the driver did not have a fair opportunity to read about any terms involving this huge charge, which is out of all proportion and not saved by the dissimilar 'ParkingEye Ltd v Beavis' case.

    In the Beavis case, which turned on specific facts relating only to the signs at that site and the unique interests and intentions of the landowners, the signs were unusually clear and not a typical example for this notorious industry. The Supreme Court were keen to point out the decision related to that car park and those facts only:

    http://imgur.com/a/AkMCN

    In the Beavis case, the £85 charge itself was in the largest font size with a contrasting colour background and the terms were legible, fairly concise and unambiguous. There were 'large lettering' signs at the entrance and all around the car park, according to the Judges.

    Here is the 'Beavis case' sign as a comparison to the signs under dispute in this case:

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-eYdphoIIDgE/VpbCpfSTaiI/AAAAAAAAE10/5uFjL528DgU/s640/Parking%2Bsign_001.jpg

    This case, by comparison, does not demonstrate an example of the 'large lettering' and 'prominent signage' that impressed the Supreme Court Judges and swayed them into deciding that in the specific car park in the Beavis case alone, a contract and 'agreement on the charge' existed.

    Here, the signs are sporadically placed, indeed obscured and hidden in some areas. They are unremarkable, not immediately obvious as parking terms and the wording is mostly illegible, being crowded and cluttered with a lack of white space as a background. It is indisputable that placing letters too close together in order to fit more information into a smaller space can drastically reduce the legibility of a sign, especially one which must be read BEFORE the action of parking and leaving the car.

    It is vital to observe, since 'adequate notice of the parking charge' is mandatory under the POFA Schedule 4 and the BPA Code of Practice, these signs do not clearly mention the parking charge which is hidden in small print (and does not feature at all on some of the signs). Areas of this site are unsigned and there are no full terms displayed - i.e. with the sum of the parking charge itself in large lettering - at the entrance either, so it cannot be assumed that a driver drove past and could read a legible sign, nor parked near one.

    This case is more similar to the signage in POPLA decision 5960956830 on 2.6.16, where the Assessor Rochelle Merritt found as fact that signs in a similar size font in a busy car park where other unrelated signs were far larger, was inadequate:

    ''the signage is not of a good enough size to afford motorists the chance to read and understand the terms and conditions before deciding to remain in the car park. [...] In addition the operators signs would not be clearly visible from a parking space [...] The appellant has raised other grounds for appeal but I have not dealt with these as I have allowed the appeal.''

    From the evidence I have seen so far, the terms appear to be displayed inadequately, in letters no more than about half an inch high, approximately. I put the operator to strict proof as to the size of the wording on their signs and the size of lettering for the most onerous term, the parking charge itself.

    The letters seem to be no larger than .40 font size going by this guide:

    http://www-archive.mozilla.org/newlayout/testcases/css/sec526pt2.htm

    As further evidence that this is inadequate notice, Letter Height Visibility is discussed here:

    http://www.signazon.com/help-center/sign-letter-height-visibility-chart.aspx

    ''When designing your sign, consider how you will be using it, as well as how far away the readers you want to impact will be. For example, if you are placing a sales advertisement inside your retail store, your text only needs to be visible to the people in the store. 1-2' letters (or smaller) would work just fine. However, if you are hanging banners and want drivers on a nearby highway to be able to see them, design your letters at 3' or even larger.''

    ...and the same chart is reproduced here:

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/gds/Outdoor-Dimensional-Sign-Letter-Best-Viewing-Distance-/10000000175068392/g.html

    ''When designing an outdoor sign for your business keep in mind the readability of the letters. Letters always look smaller when mounted high onto an outdoor wall''.

    ''...a guideline for selecting sign letters. Multiply the letter height by 10 and that is the best viewing distance in feet. Multiply the best viewing distance by 4 and that is the max viewing distance.''

    So, a letter height of just half an inch, showing the terms and the 'charge' and placed high on a wall or pole or buried in far too crowded small print, is woefully inadequate in an outdoor car park. Given that letters look smaller when high up on a wall or pole, as the angle renders the words less readable due to the perspective and height, you would have to stand right in front of it and still need a stepladder (and perhaps a torch and/or magnifying glass) to be able to read the terms.

    Under Lord Denning's Red Hand Rule, the charge (being 'out of all proportion' with expectations of drivers in this car park and which is the most onerous of terms) should have been effectively: 'in red letters with a red hand pointing to it' - i.e. VERY clear and prominent with the terms in large lettering, as was found to be the case in the car park in 'Beavis'. A reasonable interpretation of the 'red hand rule' and the 'signage visibility distance' tables above and the BPA Code of Practice, taking all information into account, would require a parking charge and the terms to be displayed far more transparently, on a lower sign and in far larger lettering, with fewer words and more 'white space' as background contrast. Indeed in the Consumer Rights Act 2015 there is a 'Requirement for transparency':

    (1) A trader must ensure that a written term of a consumer contract, or a consumer notice in writing, is transparent.
    (2) A consumer notice is transparent for the purposes of subsection (1) if it is expressed in plain and intelligible language and it is legible.

    The Beavis case signs not being similar to the signs in this appeal at all, I submit that the persuasive case law is in fact 'Vine v London Borough of Waltham Forest [2000] EWCA Civ 106' about a driver not seeing the terms and consequently, she was NOT deemed bound by them.

    This judgment is binding case law from the Court of Appeal and supports my argument, not the operator's case:

    http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2000/106.html

    This was a victory for the motorist and found that, where terms on a sign are not seen and the area is not clearly marked/signed with prominent terms, the driver has not consented to - and cannot have 'breached' - an unknown contract because there is no contract capable of being established. The driver in that case (who had not seen any signs/lines) had NOT entered into a contract. The recorder made a clear finding of fact that the plaintiff, Miss Vine, did not see a sign because the area was not clearly marked as 'private land' and the signs were obscured/not adjacent to the car and could not have been seen and read from a driver's seat before parking.

    So, for this appeal, I put this operator to strict proof of where the car was parked and (from photos taken in the same lighting conditions) how their signs appeared on that date, at that time, from the angle of the driver's perspective. Equally, I require this operator to show how the entrance signs appear from a driver's seat, not stock examples of 'the sign' in isolation/close-up. I submit that full terms simply cannot be read from a car before parking and mere 'stock examples' of close-ups of the (alleged) signage terms will not be sufficient to disprove this.

    No evidence of Landowner Authority - the operator is put to strict proof of full compliance with the BPA Code of Practice

    As this operator does not have proprietary interest in the land then I require that they produce an unredacted copy of the contract with the landowner.

    The contract and any 'site agreement' or 'User Manual' setting out details - such as any 'genuine customer' or 'genuine resident' exemptions or any site occupier's 'right of veto' charge cancellation rights, and of course all enforcement dates/times/days, and the boundary of the site - is key evidence to define what this operator is authorised to do, and when/where.

    It cannot be assumed, just because an agent is contracted to merely put some signs up and issue Parking Charge Notices, that the agent is authorised on the material date, to make contracts with all or any category of visiting drivers and/or to enforce the charge in court in their own name (legal action regarding land use disputes generally being a matter for a landowner only).

    Witness statements are not sound evidence of the above, often being pre-signed, generic documents not even identifying the case in hand or even the site rules. A witness statement might in some cases be accepted by POPLA but in this case I suggest it is unlikely to sufficiently evidence the definition of the services provided by each party to the agreement.

    Nor would it define vital information such as charging days/times, any exemption clauses, grace periods (which I believe may be longer than the bare minimum times set out in the BPA CoP) and basic but crucial information such as the site boundary and any bays where enforcement applies/does not apply. Not forgetting evidence of the only restrictions which the landowner has authorised can give rise to a charge, as well as the date that the parking contract began, and when it runs to, or whether it runs in perpetuity, and of course, who the signatories are: name/job title/employer company, and whether they are authorised by the landowner to sign a binding legal agreement.

    Paragraph 7 of the BPA CoP defines the mandatory requirements and I put this operator to strict proof of full compliance:

    7.2 If the operator wishes to take legal action on any outstanding parking charges, they must ensure that they have the written authority of the landowner (or their appointed agent) prior to legal action being taken.

    7.3 The written authorisation must also set out:

    a. the definition of the land on which you may operate, so that the boundaries of the land can be clearly defined

    b. any conditions or restrictions on parking control and enforcement operations, including any restrictions on hours of operation

    c. any conditions or restrictions on the types of vehicles that may, or may not, be subject to parking control and enforcement

    d. who has the responsibility for putting up and maintaining signs

    e. the definition of the services provided by each party to the agreement
    Last edited by topcarp; 01-05-2018 at 1:31 PM.
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 12:30 PM
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    topcarp
    It won't be dealt with here, cut adrift and in isolation from all the facts of your original case. No one is going to be skipping back and forth between different threads to understand background and context.

    EDIT TO ADD

    I've just read the latest post of your original thread and I think you have misunderstood nosferatu's advice to put this in a new post. It was saying to put in a new post within your existing thread, not start a brand new thread with it in.

    So copy and paste this appeal back into your original thread and let this one die please.
    Originally posted by Umkomaas
    Thankyou Umkomaas, I have added this to the original post now
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 1st May 18, 12:35 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    In fact, this NTK arrived 15 days after the alleged event.
    Nononononono, and more no. That would be IN TIME!

    Come on, think about what you said there, it didn't teleport to your house. LOOK AT THE DATES.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
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    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 12:56 PM
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    topcarp
    Nononononono, and more no. That would be IN TIME!

    Come on, think about what you said there, it didn't teleport to your house. LOOK AT THE DATES.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Ahh yes I see now thankyou, It was issued 15 days after the alleged incident date and I have put that "this NTK arrived 15 days after the alleged event".
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 1st May 18, 1:03 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    Yes and it's a HUGE mistake because arriving on day 15 would have been in time...

    Eeek, change it, don't talk about the day it arrived.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
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    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 1:22 PM
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    topcarp
    Yes and it's a HUGE mistake because arriving on day 15 would have been in time...

    Eeek, change it, don't talk about the day it arrived.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    I cannot remember what day it arrived anyway so just delete that little bit?
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 1st May 18, 1:27 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    Yes. All you need to state is the fact that the letter is dated 15 days after the event, so would be deemed delivered 2 WORKING days later. If the letter was dated 13th Feb, then it was deemed delivered at the earliest, on day 17. Too late for keeper liability, and no interpretation otherwise can be made by POPLA.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
    TWO Clicks needed Look up, top of the page:
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    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 1st May 18, 1:29 PM
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    topcarp
    Yes. All you need to state is the fact that the letter is dated 15 days after the event, so would be deemed delivered 2 WORKING days later. If the letter was dated 13th Feb, then it was deemed delivered at the earliest, on day 17. Too late for keeper liability, and no interpretation otherwise can be made by POPLA.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Great, so time to send it?

    Thank you so much for all your help
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 9th May 18, 8:14 PM
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    topcarp
    POPLA Appeal Part 2 – Premier Park’s evidence has me worried
    Having followed everyone’s advice and the advice given on the newbie thread on the forum today I received an email from POPLA with evidence from Premier Park countering my appeal. These are their words.

    “The vehicle was first observed at XX:XX not parked wholly within a bay. No grace period was required as the vehicle was not parked in accordance with the terms and conditions. The Appellant’s vehicle is not parked in a bay. The area he is parked has one clear line to the left of his vehicle which is clearly defining the space next to where he parked. As can be seen in all of our images, the bays are very clearly marked white with three lines. One at the front and two on the sides. There are no lines defining a space where the Appellant has parked. The spaces in the car park are clearly marked with white lines. The area the Appellant parked in, is not a clearly defined bay and is in fact an access route in the car park. There are no white lines defining a space around the Appellant’s vehicle. Please note, the signage has been in place since 16th May 2017. Within the appeal to POPLA, the Appellant has questioned the date the PCN was received. The date of the contravention was 29th January 2018. The Notice to Keeper was issued 31st January 2018. We then received a transfer of liability from the Registered Keeper naming the Appellant as the owner of the vehicle on 12th February 2018. We then reissued the PCN into the Appellant’s name on 13th February 2018. We then issued the Final Reminder to the Appellant on 15th March 2018. We have therefore issued the PCN’s in the relevant timescales. We cannot be held liable for the Driver believing he can park anywhere when the signage clearly states “Park only within marked bays.” When entering onto a managed private car park, a motorist might enter into a contract by remaining on the land for a reasonable period. The signage at the site sets out the terms and conditions of this contract. Therefore, upon entry to the car park, the driver should have reviewed the terms and conditions before deciding to park. If he felt, for any reason, that he was not able to adhere to the terms and conditions, then he would have had sufficient opportunity to choose not to park and depart the site. The Driver remained on site and therefore agreed to the terms and conditions. If the Driver was in any doubt as to whether he could park in that area, he could have spoken to a member of staff in the gym, telephoned Premier Park, our number is on the signage, or alternatively left site within a reasonable grace period without a PCN being issued. With regards to the appellant’s remarks that the parking charge notice is punitive and unreasonable and not a genuine pre-estimate of loss, we refer you to the recent Supreme Court decision dated 4th November 2015, Parking Eye Ltd-v-Mr Barry Beavis. Details on the case be found at https://www.supremecourt.uk/cases/uksc-2015-0116.html. This case was seen as an important ‘test case’ due to the complex legal arguments used by both sides. The ruling sets a legally binding precedent on all similar cases for the whole of the United Kingdom. The Driver did not comply with the terms of the site; therefore, the Parking Charge Notice was issued. It is the responsibility of the motorist to ensure that they have read and parked in compliance with the terms and conditions. On this occasion, the Appellant did not. We request that the Appellant's appeal be refused.”

    Where do I now stand as in their evidence it shows they issued a PCN on the 31st January 2018 when the incident was on the 29th January 2018, this PCN went to the new keeper who actually bought the vehicle on the evening of the incident (obviously I never received this copy). They then re-issued it as a PCN to myself dated 13th February 2018. The First Reminder dated 15th March 2018 was then issued. What are my next steps, what can I add to my appeal as it says I have 7 days from today (9th January 2018) to add more evidence? Originally I was told a few days previously (possibly by the attendant responsible for this ticket) that the location in which the vehicle was parked was fine and that as long as it wasn’t parked in a disabled bay I was ok, although I fear this will hold no water as evidence.
    • Redx
    • By Redx 9th May 18, 8:26 PM
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    Redx
    you need to add the above into your original thread and let this one die

    one topic , one thread

    alternatively, pm soolin or crabman and ask them to merge the 2 threads into 1
    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
    • Crabman
    • By Crabman 9th May 18, 10:43 PM
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    Crabman
    Threads have been merged
    I'm a Board Guide on the Savings & Investments, ISAs & Tax-free Savings, Public Transport & Cycling, Motoring and Parking Fines, Tickets & Parking Boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Board Guides are not moderators & don't read every post. If you spot a contentious or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com

    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th May 18, 1:17 AM
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    Coupon-mad
    Breaking it into paragraphs so we can read it:


    'The vehicle was first observed at XX:XX not parked wholly within a bay. No grace period was required as the vehicle was not parked in accordance with the terms and conditions.

    The Appellant's vehicle is not parked in a bay. The area he is parked has one clear line to the left of his vehicle which is clearly defining the space next to where he parked. As can be seen in all of our images, the bays are very clearly marked white with three lines. One at the front and two on the sides.

    There are no lines defining a space where the Appellant has parked. The spaces in the car park are clearly marked with white lines. The area the Appellant parked in, is not a clearly defined bay and is in fact an access route in the car park. There are no white lines defining a space around the Appellant's vehicle.

    Please note, the signage has been in place since 16th May 2017.

    Within the appeal to POPLA, the Appellant has questioned the date the PCN was received. The date of the contravention was 29th January 2018. The Notice to Keeper was issued 31st January 2018. We then received a transfer of liability from the Registered Keeper naming the Appellant as the owner of the vehicle on 12th February 2018.

    We then reissued the PCN into the Appellant's name on 13th February 2018.


    We then issued the Final Reminder to the Appellant on 15th March 2018. We have therefore issued the PCNs in the relevant timescales.

    We cannot be held liable for the Driver believing he can park anywhere when the signage clearly states 'Park only within marked bays.' When entering onto a managed private car park, a motorist might enter into a contract by remaining on the land for a reasonable period.

    The signage at the site sets out the terms and conditions of this contract. Therefore, upon entry to the car park, the driver should have reviewed the terms and conditions before deciding to park. If he felt, for any reason, that he was not able to adhere to the terms and conditions, then he would have had sufficient opportunity to choose not to park and depart the site.

    The Driver remained on site and therefore agreed to the terms and conditions. If the Driver was in any doubt as to whether he could park in that area, he could have spoken to a member of staff in the gym, telephoned Premier Park, our number is on the signage, or alternatively left site within a reasonable grace period without a PCN being issued.

    With regards to the appellant's remarks that the parking charge notice is punitive (snip the b@wl@cks about the Beavis case, load of codswallop and nothing like this case)...

    The Driver did not comply with the terms of the site; therefore, the Parking Charge Notice was issued. It is the responsibility of the motorist to ensure that they have read and parked in compliance with the terms and conditions. On this occasion, the Appellant did not. We request that the Appellant's appeal be refused.'

    Where do I now stand as in their evidence it shows they issued a PCN on the 31st January 2018 when the incident was on the 29th January 2018, this PCN went to the new keeper who actually bought the vehicle on the evening of the incident (obviously I never received this copy).

    They then re-issued it as a PCN to myself dated 13th February 2018. The First Reminder dated 15th March 2018 was then issued.

    What are my next steps, what can I add to my appeal as it says I have 7 days from today (9th January 2018) to add more evidence? Originally I was told a few days previously (possibly by the attendant responsible for this ticket) that the location in which the vehicle was parked was fine and that as long as it wasn't parked in a disabled bay I was ok, although I fear this will hold no water as evidence.
    It's MAY!

    You stand exactly where you were, and must send POPLA a few comments on the Portal like everyone else does. If you lose, so what?

    No-one here pays when PP win at POPLA, which they fairly often do.

    Did they include evidence of landowner authority and is that contract dated, with readable signatories of the landowner (not a random agent) and does the contract have an expiry date? Is it clear whether the contract is a rolling one continuing into perpetuity? If not, comment on that!

    Are the signage pictures clear, is the £sum of the parking charge in large letters and are there terms that mean parking on the roadway results in a charge? No? Comment on that...

    I am amazed that your sold the car on 29th January and PP reckon they got the new keeper's data within a day...but maybe the V5 change reporting that you'd sold the vehicle was done online immediately by you?
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 10-05-2018 at 1:22 AM.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
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    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 10th May 18, 8:15 PM
    • 37 Posts
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    topcarp
    Breaking it into paragraphs so we can read it:






    It's MAY!

    You stand exactly where you were, and must send POPLA a few comments on the Portal like everyone else does. If you lose, so what?

    No-one here pays when PP win at POPLA, which they fairly often do.

    Did they include evidence of landowner authority and is that contract dated, with readable signatories of the landowner (not a random agent) and does the contract have an expiry date? Is it clear whether the contract is a rolling one continuing into perpetuity? If not, comment on that!

    Are the signage pictures clear, is the £sum of the parking charge in large letters and are there terms that mean parking on the roadway results in a charge? No? Comment on that...

    I am amazed that your sold the car on 29th January and PP reckon they got the new keeper's data within a day...but maybe the V5 change reporting that you'd sold the vehicle was done online immediately by you?
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Thankyou very much for your advice Coupon-mad, i shall add some comments to my appeal as instructed.

    They have included evidence of landowner authority along with a document signed by/act on behalf of the landowner, but non of this is readable as names and signatures for both parties have been blanked out. Unfortunately it would seem the contract is a rolling one every 12 months.

    Yes I am amazed as well, unfortunately I did transfer the V5 online pretty quickly, I can't remember whether it was that evening or not and can't find the e-mail from the DVLA, either it was deleted or it went into junk.

    One thing I would like to run past everyone is a google earth image I have edited with some evidence which I may be helpful to my case, how do I go about adding it to the forum as it asks for a web link for the image?
    • KeithP
    • By KeithP 10th May 18, 8:22 PM
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    KeithP
    One thing I would like to run past everyone is a google earth image I have edited with some evidence which I may be helpful to my case, how do I go about adding it to the forum as it asks for a web link for the image?
    Originally posted by topcarp
    Upload your image to a webhosting site and post the link to that uploaded image here.
    .
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 10th May 18, 11:56 PM
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    Coupon-mad
    But you can't add new evidence, attachments or images, at POPLA comments stage anyway.
    PRIVATE 'PCN'? DON'T PAY BUT DON'T IGNORE IT UNLESS IN SCOTLAND OR NI
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    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 11th May 18, 5:09 AM
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    topcarp
    But you can't add new evidence, attachments or images, at POPLA comments stage anyway.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad
    Ohh dear!!
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 11th May 18, 3:25 PM
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    topcarp
    This is an image of the car park below, the blue rectangle in the centre is the location which the vehicle was parked when I received the PCN, the green rectangle is an unmarked parking space next to the entrance that according to the gym management is a legal parking space even though it is not marked as such and is next to disabled bays, the orange marked areas on the left of the carpark are legal parking spaces that are unmarked and without white lines to indicate them as such. What are peoples interpretations of this layout, I believe it is very misleading and makes drivers an easy target be being so vauge?

    Last edited by topcarp; 11-05-2018 at 3:30 PM.
    • topcarp
    • By topcarp 13th May 18, 1:10 PM
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    topcarp
    A penny for peoples thoughts?
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