/ Motoring

Have you ever challenged a parking fine?

Private parking fines are on the agenda in the high court as one unhappy consumer is challenging the law. But we feel this case goes beyond parking, which is why we’ve been permitted to intervene‚Ķ

A parking fine is an annoyance all drivers have probably experienced. That sinking feeling when you return to your car to see that yellow notice under the windscreen wiper is never a welcome one, yet we pay up nonetheless.

But Barry Beavis who received an £85 parking fine for over-staying by 56 minutes, has decided to take the private car park operator to court.

What the law states

Since the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 came into force, the law states that private land owners are banned from towing, blocking-in, clamping or immobilising a vehicle without lawful authority. This was put in place in an effort to control clamping by rogue firms.

However, fines can still be issued, for example, if a vehicle owner stays longer than their allotted time. While the fine is meant to be proportionate, sometimes they can be over £100 a fine and it’s the excessive amount of these fines that Barry Beavis is challenging.

Split opinions on parking fines

His lawyers have argued that ‘to be lawful, charges should be set at levels meant only to compensate for any loss in achieving the aim of deterring over-stayers and not to make large profits’. They felt that ‘the losses to ParkingEye were very small administrative costs, and its charges were so excessive as to be unenforceable’.

However, the Independent Parking Committee has argued that fines are ‘the only protection that landowners have short of installing expensive barrier equipment’. While also adding that people have a ‘choice’ if they want to park there or not.¬†It’s for those reasons that the private car park operator feels the ‘level of charges are neither extortionate nor unconscionable but within the bounds of reasonableness’.

This is bigger than parking fines

We’ve decided to intervene in the case because it has ability to set a precedent well beyond the parking industry. If Mr Beavis were to lose the case, it could have a wider impact on the law for penalty charges and unfair terms, which is why the Court of Appeal has granted us permission to share what, we feel, will be the wider implications of any decision.

The worry is that any decision in favour of the parking operator could perhaps see a relaxation of the law on penalty charges. There’s then potential for higher fines and charges to creep in across a whole range of consumer markets.

Even if the final results of the case could see the Court ruling in favour of the private parking operator, we hope they’ll take our views on penalty charges into account.

Have you had a parking fine you think was an excessive amount? Or do you feel it’s fair for parking companies to fine if you over-stay your time?

[UPDATE 04/11/2015] – The Supreme Court today gave its judgement on Barry Beavis’ case. Disappointingly, he lost.

We intervened in the case to ensure important consumer rights that protect people from excessive fines in all sectors were not watered down. However, parking fines issued by private companies have been ruled as fair and proportionate by the Supreme Court..

Our executive director Richard Lloyd said:

‚Äč‚Äč’This is a thoroughly disappointing judgment based on a narrow‚Äč ‚Äčinterpretation of the law. It will cause chaos if cowboy parking firms‚Äč ‚Äčchoose to take advantage of the ruling by hitting drivers with even‚Äč ‚Äčmore excessive charges. Our advice to consumers is to be on your guard‚Äč ‚Äčand always appeal if you think a parking fine is unfair.’

We’re¬†now planning to take the issue up with government ministers since¬†a reversal of the judgment will require changes to the law.


Private car parks should all have an hourly rate. The first hour or two hours could still be free, but if a car overstays that period then there is no necessity for a penalty charge, just payment of the advertised hourly rate for the full period used [part of an hour counting as a whole hour]. Private car parks are usually opportunistic ventures with nothing other than a commercial purpose and, in many cases, an exploitative manner of enforcement and no beneficial return to the community.

Car parks operated by local authorities are different; they are provided in connection with a publicly declared [and consulted upon] traffic management order which regulates parking in a zone and they are patrolled by enforcement officers operating in accordance with an officially authorised code of practice and subject to public accountability. If it weren’t for the need to reduce traffic congestion and excessive or dangerous parking on the public highway [or some other identifiable public benefit] there would be no justification for local authorities acquiring and holding land and providing a public car parking facility. Town centre car parks are not inherently profitable and are subsidised by the revenue from on-street parking enforcement.

Hold on, this whole article has thoroughly confused me. As far as I know, from having read many other articles on private parking, they are not allowed to issue fines; instead, they are called “charges”. A parking ticket is not a fine, but an invoice. This chap who’s taken the company to court is not trying to re-write the law. He is simply applying the existing law as it is.

In fact, the most usual advice that I’ve seen is that you shouldn’t take the parking company to court; instead, if there parking charges are unreasonably high, just ignore them. Don’t reply to their threats. Let me take you to court instead. As far as I know, in the recent history of private parking companies, they have never won.

Have things changed recently?

If excess charges are simply meant to cover excess costs then they wouldn’t have any grounds at all for doubling the charge if you don’t pay up within a week or two, as they haven’t incurred any meaningful extra costs in that period. The whole thing is of course a scam designed to extort as much money as possible.

I suppose there is a ‘caveat emptor’ decision to be made when you park on private land. However it’s annoying when quasi-public bodies – I’m thinking of hospitals here – resort to such tactics. Many have a pay and display arrangement and of course you often can’t predict how long your are going to stay, nor sometimes can you easily go out and top up while you are there. Yet they employ the some of the most money-grubbing contractors around and have no reservations about ‘fining’ you.

You are right to raise the issue of hospital car parks Nick.

If someone is admitted to hospital in an emergency, having the correct money and knowing how long you might be there waiting for news of a family member could be difficult.

As you say, it is difficult to know how long you may have to park for, for example to attend an out-patient appointment.

There is a good case for hospital car parks to allow payment on departure.

I parked in a retail park pay and display, with two hours free Рbut you had to get a ticket. I forgot! Came back to find a penalty notice for £70. I contacted the private parking company (after contacting Which? Legal) with copies of shopping receipts that showed when I had left their car park and visited another store, but to no avail. I then challenged the scale of the charge. Eventually, in the appeal process, their reply was outside the decalared maximum response time in their conditions so they dropped the claim. We both failed on technicalities.

My local hospital car park is barriered with a ticket issued on entry. When leaving you exchange this ticket at a pay machine for an exit one, paying the required fee. Seems to get round all the penalty problems – you can’t park or leave without paying.

Our local authority pay and display car parks work on number plate recognition. At the end of your stay enter your license plate number at the pay machine and cough up for the length of stay. You get 10 minutes free – for a quick shop, paper or lottery ticket – and 10 minutes once you’ve paid to get back to your car, sort yourself out and leave. Seems a fair system to me.

But what I object to are wholly disproportionate charges if you contravene the car park regs. £40 Р£80 is out of order. You must deter deliberate non-payers, but a charge of double the fee not paid (or say a full day if time of stay cannot be assessed) plus the fair cost of sending a letter / placing a ticket and of processing your penalty payment should be sufficient. Someone just needs to assess what fair costs are.

In a pay and display car park, I wouldn’t have too many problems with this as it’s unlikely to be more than ¬£20. The real problem comes in free car parks where no payment is required.

PaulSmith38 says:
28 February 2015

I must take issue with your article – On what basis do you think a FINE is permitted on private land? The law makes no mention of parking fines or penalties for parking on private land, only the collection of unpaid parking charges. http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2012/9/schedule/4

Whilst Parking on public or council land can legally be subjected to a penalty or fine. This is not the case for parking on private land- see sec 16 p23 of this government document

Parking on private land is often subject to a contract, but many contracts contain clauses that are not legally enforceable. For example tenancy contracts often have clauses the landlord cannot enforce. Likewise, Parking contracts contain clauses which if recent caselaw were to be considered may appear unenforceable.

These points should be put to the judge in order for him to consider them, however if they were not put to him, he will not be able to rule on them and could reach a different decision.

In the case of Barry Beavis it appears the judge may not have established the fact private parking and public parking are subject to different laws and rules and fines are not allowed. Counsel for ParkingEye was believed to describe their charges as a penalty.

POPLA the parking appeals process appear to agree with this view that fines are not allowed as they have allowed hundreds of challenges where the person has complained of charges not being fair as they do not reflect the loss to the company.

To a layperson it looks like ParkingEye base their charges at the rate set as a penalty charge by the Police or councils. They bear little relation to an allowable contractual sum for the actual loss suffered for unpaid parking charges.

When I was given one of these tickets (Invoice) after shopping in a supermarket, I had no Idea I would face an £80 fine for a short overstay. However I did some research and appealed to POPLA that this was unfair as it did not represent the contractual loss and I won my case.

I was once involved in a court case which did not go my way, I had only met my barrister on the morning of the hearing and he did not present information which later he said would have been able to get a positive result. It is really important that courts are given the correct information, and your article does not appear to reflect the difference between private and public parking and where fines can and can’t be levied.

Best wishes

Paul, my understanding is that a “fine” is a criminal matter whereas a civil equivalent would be a “penalty charge”. That is what my private parking misdemeanour was subject to and I think now parking wardens have gone and local councils have “civil enforcement officers” they again issue penalty notices rather than fines, as they are civil cases.

To me a penalty has to deter people from abusing a legitimate charge – it does cost money to provide parking on a retail park for example – and there will be administrative costs incurred in pursuing someone to pay an appropriate penalty. Isn’t this the area that needs looking at to establish fair maximum costs?

A “Penalty Charge Notice” can only be issued by a public authority. Private firms are not allowed to call them penalties, but they use cunningly similar words, colours and typefaces as the ones issued by the local council, so you might see a “Parking Charge Notice” and think it says “Penalty”.

Paulsmith38 says:
9 March 2015

Absolutely right Clint, but the charge may not legally penalise the driver, it can only cover losses. If a parking charge on private land is set at the same cost as a Council or Police penalty and provides an element of profit for ParkingEye, then it is a PENALTY. “That which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet.” Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2).”

Apologies for the late reply Paul and Clint. We decided to use the term ‘fines’ in the colloquial sense as this is how lots of people refer to them. However, it is correct that there are differences between the parking regimes that apply to private and public land and private parking operators do not have the power to issue fines in the way public parking enforcers do. Thanks

Josef Kafka says:
8 November 2015

How now, Mr Steen
” We decided ..”
Who is this ”We”, plz?

You’re quite right Paul and Patrick, that the invoice is a de facto “penalty” not only in colloquial terms but also in how it’s perceived by the public at large. However, I still think that it’s important to highlight the fact that it’s not a penalty, for the benefit of the average user. The parking companies are taking advantage of the public’s misunderstanding of the situation, and using colloquial terminology only propagates the current situation to the detriment of the consumer.

Since on-street parking enforcement in most parts of the UK has been progressively decriminalised with councils taking over from the police, the local authorities responsible have only been empowered to issue “penalty charge notices”, the payment due is a “penalty charge”, and the debt is enforecable through the county court, not the magistrates’ courts as was formerly the case. Indeed, Northampton County Court has been established and equipped as the central court for processing all enforcements where the local authority registers the charge as a debt and seeks a warrant for recovery. I presume there are very few actual court appearances [since parking appeals are handled by tribunals] so the function is largely administrative and computer-driven with little judicial oversight of individual cases. Once in possession of a warrant the local authority can instruct a court-approved bailiff to execute it and who can, if necessary, seize goods to the value of the debt plus all fees. So although it is a civil process it has the full weight of the law behind it and the sanctions for non-payment are heavy.

The distinction between a “fine” imposed by a criminal court and a “charge” demanded by a local authority or landowner for unauthorised parking is mere quibbling. They are both “fines” [just like the fine for not bringing back your library books on time] and I think that, in popular journalism, “fine” is the right word and means more to most people.

Thank you. I am in the middle of a dispute whereby I went into a car park in Falmouth because it was raining, the car was fogging up, getting dark and we were supposed to meet some friends. Very little phone reception. Apparently I stayed for 15 minutes, but it seemed like 5!! We wre in the wrong car park and once we heard from our friends we left the car park and met them. Fined £60, wrote to them and they wrote back saying no chance. I left the matter (my fault) and now have a debt collection invoice threatening me! Not sure where I stand but I intend to fight it as a matter of principle.

I suspect you are liable and that only luck or mercy could save you from having to pay. You have accepted that you parked in the car park without paying; your reasons and the duration will not make any difference. My personal opinion is that fighting it will cost you dearly but the choice is yours.

Jane Frost says:
28 February 2015

I once received a parking ticket for ‘not displaying my ticket properly’.

It was on the dashboard but the requirement to stick it on the windscreen was on the reverse of the printed machine ticket, which you only get to see..after you had pay. So post contract.

Amusingly the operative had not helped the parking company’s case by writing the number of the ticket ( tiny writing) on his ‘fine’ information. So he could read the ticket perfectiy well.

I pointed this out to the company. After to-ing and fro-ing got, with me saying I’d be happy to see them in court but I would be charging expenses, etc. ..and where was the photograph? They backed off in the display charge.

Then I got a new demand saying that I had ‘overstayed’, so poorly worded it read as if it had been written by a chimpanzee with a typewriter.

Although the ‘ charge’ ticket time was written well before the exit time on the ticket.

No photograph of course.

So I sent a signed-for letter to the company’s CEO basically saying the whole thing was ridiculous..and where was the photograph – as he was stating in the company news-sheet that there always had to be one.

I got a ‘ Case closed’ letter back, with a rather peeved air about it.

Shame.. I would rather have enjoyed racking up the fees if he’d have chosen court.

ConCats (sic) , Ms Mouse metamorphosed to cat.

One of the issues is what is a fair penalty for overstaying. Obviously the charge must cover the costs of administration, but because companies exist to make a profit, there is the temptation for them to make an excessive profit. At the very least there should be guidance on what is fair to those who have to pay the charges and to the companies that control parking.

I think private organisations or individuals who provide ‘open’ car parking [to distinguish it from ‘closed’ car parking at a block of flats or an office building which is only for the occupants] must implicitly accept that there will be an element of overstaying. The cost of operating the car park, including its enforcement and the administration of that enforcement, should generally be recovered from the charges set for use of the car park. Any surcharge for overstaying should therefore be quite modest until it becomes seriously excessive and thereby depriving the operator of revenue from a different user of that space. Let’s not forget that in many car parks users overpay because they exit before their allotted time has expired and sometimes that space is re-used fora further payment, possibly even by someone who also stays a short time but has nevertheless paid for a full-time period. Where the minimum payment period is two hours, the same space might be used [and paid for] three times within that period. It would be practically impossible for all spaces to be vacated and immediately reocuppied exactly at the expiry time of each purchased period so there has to be some recognition in any assessment of an operator’s loss due to overstaying of this irregular pattern.

With a ‘closed’ car park, a deterrent surcharge might be justified for occupation by a non-authorised user irrespective of duration because in that situation the user is a trespasser, but the surcharge still needs to be reasonable and proportionate.

Good points, well argued.
On a similar topic:
If I have bought the use of parking space in a carpark for hours,
exit after minus 2 hours, and donate the balance to another motorist,
why is that not ‘legal’ / allowable?

Do you mean ”motivation” ?

I suffered a lot of wasted time as a result of errors by a private parking operator and POPLA. I had paid to park on private land, but a representative of the landowner was unable to tell me which space I should park in. I made an educated guess, but it turned out that the space I parked in was wrong by only one space. The user of that space complained and I was given a private parking ticket for ¬£60 (¬£100 after 14 days). I appealed to the private parking operator, who ignored my comments, just sending me a standard response. Following advice from Which Legal Service, I appealed to POPLA, but before POPLA dealt with it, the landowner told the private parking operator that the ticket had been incorrectly issued. They offered to cancel the ticket, provided that I paid the ¬£27.50 fee that POPLA had charged them for initiating my appeal. I refused to pay the fee as it wasn’t my error. POPLA later rejected my appeal with the reason that I had not displayed a valid permit, even though no permit system operated on the site. I continued to refuse to pay the ¬£100 charge and indicated strongly that I will happily go to court over it. The private parking operator has taken no further action, more than six months later.

Their ‘grind you down’ tactics are tantamount to harrassment in my opinion.

I have encountered a few faulty meters that would not accept coins, so rather than taking the chance of receiving a ticket I have avoided parking there. In the absence of information at the site, is free parking allowed or could I have received a ticket if I had parked my car?

I’m hoping someone here might have a definitive answer for me. Can the local authority put double yellow lines on private land (an unadopted road where my freehold extends across the road and therefore the lines). I can’t find an answer to this anywhere, well I can but they contradict, so what’s the statute say?

So far as I am aware the local highway authority has no jurisdiction over an unadopted private street and, as you say, your freehold ownership extends to the centre of the carriageway. Waiting restrictions can only be imposed by a local authority after making a traffic management or traffic regulation order which requires publication, consultation and determination. An order may only be made in respect of a road for which the local highway authority is the traffic authority. This cannot include a private street. Highways and parking legislation has changed considerably in recent years but you might like to start by looking at the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. To confirm that private streets are not subject to local highway authority action you might have to go back to very early highways acts. You could ask your highways department for confirmation that your unadopted road cannot be included in a traffic management or traffic regulation – get it in writing if you can.

I am well aware that parking tickets are non-transferable but like others I often stick a ticket with an hour or more time remaining to the ticket machine for the benefit of others. Like punitive fines for overstaying for a short time I feel it is a rather unfair condition that parking tickets are not transferrable.

May I plead guilty to deliberately ignoring the terms and conditions and ask for several hundred other offences to be taken into consideration?

I wrote earlier :
Josef Kafka says:
Good points, well argued.
On a similar topic:
If I have bought the use of parking space in a carpark for hours,
exit after minus 2 hours, and donate the balance to another motorist,
why is that not ‚Äėlegal‚Äô / allowable?
Anyone – WHY is it that ” parking tickets are non-transferable ”?
And please don’t just write ” ‘coz a judge says so.”

On the 11/4/2016 I too received a PNC from parking eye with them saying I had over stayed by 36 minutes regardless of me using the paybyphone app. I parked up under the 2 free hours parking and 1 hour 30 mins later I purchased a ticket to cover extra time with the added alert service. I am furious due to the fact that I have asked to park for an additional 3 hours on our company credit card so not even my own money, and the service has charged me for 1 hour and not the 3 hours I requested. So to be plain I parked at 9:30am and paid for parking at 11:07am for 3 hours via paybyphone giving me till 14:07 to leave the carpark, how can it be my fault thet an automatic payment service has undercharged me by £1? The only way I could have increased the cost would have to increase the time when I left the car park at 13:36. To put it into context paybyphone has included the 2 hours free parking in the requested time! I assume when you pay to park your vehicle is from the intended time your parking from. I see this as a way to catch out motors by tricking them into thinking the time they have paid for has covered them.
To add insult to injury parking eye give 14 days to pay the reduced amount of ¬£60 from ¬£100 which halts when you appeal to them but if you appeal to POPLA afterwards they don’t give 14 days from that appeal! They like to leave passing their side of the case to POPLA over the initial 14 days to ensure you have to pay the full ¬£100.
The system is disgusting in fighting for the public, instead they are happy to support the fat cats that milk our society of what little money we get from our hard working low paid jobs!

How do I stop Councils sending me other peoples parking fines? It took me one year and four months to get Croydon Council to admit that my postcode is different.
Now Enfield Council are making my life a misery.
Does anyone pay any attention to the returned mail?
Who is to blame for this error?
Superb Cars is listed on Google as being at York Road, N11 2TE.
The councils are using N11 2DE. Neither of these is my postcode.
I am an old lady who has never even had a bicycle and all these threatening letters are very frightening.
How can two councils have made the same mistake?

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If two councils are making the same mistake I suspect it is because of an error in the DVLA records. That is where councils get details of the registered keepers of vehicles. It might be worth a check with the DVLA to save you being bothered again.

I was charged for being in a private car park (through Parking Eye Ltd) just to turn my car around. My car stalled and I count get it started for about 10 -15 mins of which weeks later I received a parking fine. I disputed it, never heard anything back and then received a £160 charge from a debt recovery company who said i had to pay it and could not dispute it either with them or Parking eye ltd. I am not sure of my legal position on this and feel a bit lost as what to doing coupled with the fact I am being held over a barrel to pay this fine.
Any guidance appreciated.

I think you do have grounds to withhold payment [although I am not sure it would be financially advantageous in the end] . If Parking Eye did not respond to your original challenge they should not be able to enforce the parking charge. If they had responded and confirmed that your car was contravening the parking rules for the site you would have had a limited opportunity to pay the parking charge at the full rate [not the discounted rate for early payment if applicable] but they seem to have skipped that stage and escalated it to an excess rate because payment has not been made. You will probably now also have to meet the debt collectors’ costs on top of the parking charge.

I assume the issue of a parking charge notice was activated by a remotely monitored CCTV cameras and number plate recognition system to record the times your car entered and left the site and made no allowance for the fact that your car did not ‘park’ but had stalled and become immobile. Even so I suspect that, under the regulations for that car park, such an occupation of the site does generate a liability for payment.

If you have not already done so it might be worth checking with POPLA, the independent appeals service for parking charge notices issued on private land, but time is running against you and the charge can only go up if payment is delayed. Personally I think you would have a good case in the courts but the process itself would not necessarily ease your mind and you would have had to have exhausted any other appeal mechanism in the first instance. Give POPLA a call [03301 596126] or go to their website [put POPLA in your browser].

What sort of Car park was it; for example could the general public park there if they paid or was it a private car park where you had to have a permit to park.

(POPLA can’t help you as they need a POPLA code which has to be generated by Parking Eye.) Both “Money saving expert” and “Pepipoo.com” provide some great advice.

In Peter’s case the POPLA code should be on the notice he has received from the debt collectors or be obtainable from Parking Eye via the debt collectors if necessary. Refusal to provide that information would strengthen Peter’s case. It would be traceable from the car’s vehicle registration mark within their systems.

peter, if you have made a complaint to Parking Eye challenging your penalty, and they have received it, then they are obliged to respond within a specific length of time, according to the Code of Practice issued by their trade body the British Parking Association. Assuming they still belong you can look at the CoP on the BPA’s website to check the recommended time limit. I think it was 6 weeks.

Sylvia Browne says:
27 June 2016

I have received a county court claim form for parking in my own designated space that is deeded to the property that I rent, because I will not display a permit that was imposed on all the tenants last year without negotiation.
I am collating evidence to take to court and need help to find something that will win my case. Please can anyone help?

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If you are entitled to a parking space then it may be the landlord checks to see whether they are being correctly used, and not by illegal parkers. Having a permit allows you to use the space, whether it is your own car or someone you give parmission to. If that is the case then displaying a permit is in your interests and your fellow tenants. Perhaps I have misunderstood but can you tell me why you refuse to display your permit and what were the conditions you wished to negotiate?

“Because I will not display a permit that was imposed on all the tenants last year without negotiation.”

If you are renting then the only one with any rights is/are the owner[s] of the property. If the owners have agreed a system then that is the end of the matter. If the owner is social housing then again you have no legal standing to object to it.

There may be grounds on safety or the lack of forewarning that might mean some consultation on the form of the permit etc but basically nothing else.

Sylvia – I presume you have received an official notice issued by the County Court stating that you are in default of a parking charge notice [PCN] for parking in a restricted space without displaying a valid permit. It looks as though the enforcement process has escalated to the point that an application has been made to the County Court by the landowner to enforce the penalty such that a warrant could be issued to bailiffs for recovery of the fine and costs. If you did not receive the original PCN and subsequent notices you can certainly challenge the official notice. Try to speak to an officer at the County Court – they are usually very helpful in explaining the process and what your rights are. Good luck.

I have received a Parking Charge Notice from Emparks for £75. I pulled up at the side of the road by Stansted airport to pick my son up. He was stood by the grass verge waiting for me so i was only stopped for a few seconds while he got in the car. The notice includes a picture of the car stopped on yellow lines with my son walking across the grass to get in.

They have sent the notice to my wife as she is the registered keeper of the vehicle and ‘invited’ her to pay the charge. It does set out the appeals process regarding popla etc. Do I need to respond to this or can this be ignored?

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Alanslad; if the land is owned by Stansted then it’s pretty likely that it’s subject to byelaws, which means only the driver is liable not the registered keeper. You may want to post on MoneySavingExpert or Pepipoo.com as they both have experience of dealing with parking tickets on private land.

The road is a private road owned by Stansted (MAG)

Was it a private road in the sense the general public were prohibited from using it?

No, the public can use it to access airport car parks, hotels etc and links to the A roads and motorway

Then I don’t see how you can be penalised for stopping briefly unless it specifically prohibits stopping to pick up or drop off.

All the access roads surrounding Stansted Airport, from the point that they cease to be public highways maintained by the county and district councils, are private roads in the sense that they are part of the airport estate and their use and occupation is controlled by the airport company. From memory I believe there are mandatory “No Stopping” [i.e. Clearway] signs at the entry points to these roads meaning that stopping to set down, pick up, wait or park are prohibited. These regulations are partly to prevent congestion on the access roads, partly for public safety reasons, and partly for commercial reasons: Stansted operates a range of parking facilities including drop-off & pick-up for 10 minutes at ¬£3, and short-stay car parks from ¬£3.60 for up to 30mins. There is also a mid-stay car park which is free of charge for up to one hour, ¬£1 for up to 2 hours. The restrictions on the access roads are designed to deter people from avoiding the car parking charges and since there is a free facility for up to one hour the policy seems reasonable to me.

Regarding the PCN issued to Alanslad, it was sent his wife as the vehicle owner since there is no other way the enforcement agency can serve the notice but the registered keeper will remain liable unless they notify Emparks that a different person was in charge of the vehicle at the time. Alanslad should certainly not ignore the PCN and should deal with it as soon as possible, Unless appealing against it via Popla, he would be well advised to send the payment required to close the notice. Failure to pay without appealing will only lead to escalation of the penalty. Appealing unsuccessfully could also be more expensive than settling the charge at the initial rate. In my view it would be a waste of valuable time to involve the local council in the issue as it is almost certainly outside their jurisdiction.

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Yes. The airport company owns the entire site including the access roads from where they leave the public highways. They possibly have their own Act of Parliament or come under Civil Aviation Acts which, as Castle says above, enable the airport to make its own bye-laws and regulations. This is not unusual. Lots of big companies have private acts of Parliament. I cannot think what powers Essex County Council would have in relation to the airport other than high-level town & country planning, environmental protection, trading standards, and certain public transport services. The district council would have responsibilities in relation to public health and hygiene, building regulations, licensing, and lower-level town & country planning. Local authorities have no jurisdiction over parking on private land [except in the case of their own land, of course]. The law in respect of parking on private land and its enforcement is primarily case law handed down by the Court, not statute law, and the airport will have to comply with the case law or risk a challenge..

The airport is not a law unto itself – it has to comply with all the relevant legislation concerning airports and other facilities, the health & safety at work acts, the environmental protection acts, the employment acts, and all other applicable public laws. Operation of the airport is regulated by the Civil Aviation Authority.

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can i appeal twice against a parking fine, it has just been refused. It was simply because i did not fill in the two noughts for 9 0clock. surely this oversight could be excused, i had paid for the permit , it wasnt as if i was trying to get away with hours .

If it was a local authority then they have a adjudicator I believe where you meet to make your case.
Try looking at “http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/reclaim/parking-ticket-appeals”
Look also at this which explains the full process: https://www.gov.uk/appeal-parking-fine

I live in a block of flats that has permit controlled parking in the main parking area to its frontage, plus two single bays to the rear.
The two bays to the rear are directly accessible from the main road, unlike the bays to the frontage, which are in an obviously allocated parking area.
As we have 21 bays and 28 flats, parking is a problem, this is exasperated by the fact that each flat has only one permit issued.
I recently received a parking charge notice, as I parked behind my son’s car, that was in the parking bay to the rear of the property. His car was fully in an allocated bay and had a permit. My vehicle was parked about a foot behind his, on the section of the small cul-de-sac that is the main street. I had previously spoken to the parking charge operator about the legality of my parking behind my son’s car and his words were “I have only jurisdiction for the two bays and not the section of the road behind them”. There is no actual lines etc that designate where their jurisdiction extends to, other than the markings of the two bays and the warning notice states that you will be fined if; “no permit is displayed if you are in one of these bays or if you are incorrectly positioned inside a bay”. Neither of these two points were breached when I parked behind my son’s car.
I sent in the normal dispute to the parking company (PCM), who responded within 24 hours via letter (so obviously not considered any of my points, especially what their own operative had advised me), stating “You parked in a manner whereby you agreed to pay a charge, the parking attendant recorded that you parked outside a marked bay. The site is private land and is managed by PCM.
The ‘site’ is a tiny indented bay on a public road, that, as I have previously stated, has no actual indication of where the boundry of the ‘site’ starts or ends.

The lack of definition or demarcation of the area where a parking permit is not required could be grounds for challenge or appeal.