I have done a bit more digging and think that there are two areas that can be exploited
1.the fact that only the driver can be taken to court.
yes I was the driver but they would have to prove it.
I wouldn't deny I was the driver but neither would I admit it.
Short of putting me in an I.D parade they couldn't prove I was driving
2.the offence is for failing to display a valid permit.
there is some justification for thinking that you can only be prosecuted for not paying.
not displaying is different and not enforcible.
The agreement between Meteor and the railway is the decider in who has the authority to pursue a claim and under what circumstances. from what you describe meteor will lose this one for more than 1 reason but will just change tack next time, they dont want to lose all that free money in a hurry, they might have to EARN their living next time.
getting a copy of the contract will be impossible as they will protect their interest by claiming commercial confidentiality but persisting in asking the railway what it is that you have supposedly done wrong may yield something. The general one will be trespassing on railway property contrary to byelaw 7 or 14 but that would need to offer proof that Meteor have the explicit authority to act on behalf of the railway co. They may well have that authority but do they have the authority to charge for a permit rather than issue one?
As i see it Meteor are only issuing the pcn and permits on behalf of London & South Eastern.the letter telling me to pay up or else is from PCN Debt Recovery ltd who are actually london and south eastern in disguise so it would seem that L & S E are actually pursuing the claim.looking at other threads i suppose we are at the point,have they got the permission to do this from their landlords british rail or rail track whichever it is.again they wont readily disclose the information.i must say that i feel a bit easier in as much that you think i could win this but i would like to know why so i can gather as much info on the relevant points before i put in my appeal.
RB 14 covers parking or leaving a vehicle, but not waiting. I suppose that Meteor rely upon to the words "according to the instructions of -- an authorised person at that place" as allowing them to invent any rule they wish but basically they can really only tell you to move on. RB 7 prohibits touting for business without written permission so that could give them free rein to charge what they want for the permission.
Now, if you lobby the railway co directly you might get somewhere and it would be worth noting that the ticket you were handed doesnt actually match either of the above criteria so you havent broken any law, disobeyed any signage and havent refused to obey the instruction of the railway operator. If they want to continue to get you to pay up then they will have to show where you have fallen foul of the delegated authority and that might not be in their interest in the future.
For info - South Eastern Trains are part of the Go Ahead group. South Eastern Trains will be the operator of the station through a franchise agreement. The station itself will be owned by Network Rail.
we have to pay for a permit to wait in the station.the same rules dont seem to apply to the general public.you can go to the station any early evening during the week and it will be rammed with people waiting to pick up from the trains.it would be interesting to know how many pcns were issued to them during the time we were being harassed.none would be my guess.if i thought it would make a difference i would take some photos to prove that we are not alone in our misdemeanours and then ask for this information.meteor are quick enough to take our money but not so quick to police the rank and enforce rules broken by others.
while i keep digging i am going to appeal against the original pcn on the grounds that i have not entered into a contract so therefore could not be in breach of any rule set out in one.hopefully i will be able to make a good enough case concerning railway bye law 14.i really need to know for sure if not displaying a permit can be enforced under this byelaw as that is what the offence is on the second demand for money.can they actually change the offence from one thing to another.