Today I got the result of my POPLA appeal from an incident from October 2015.
I've lost the appeal, here is what they have said:
The site operates Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR). The operator states that the appellant’s vehicle was captured by ANPR entering the site at 17.14.24, exiting at 17.27.00. The appellant was at the site for a period of 12 minutes and 36 seconds. The operator has provided a system generated print out which shows that the appellant’s vehicle registration number does not appear on the date of the event.
The operator confirms that the site is a paid parking car park which is clearly stated on the signage at the site. The operator confirms that there are 15 signs, placed at the entrance, exit and throughout the site stating the terms and conditions. The signage at the site is in full compliance with Section 18 of the British Parking Association (BPA) Code of Practice with particular reference to Section 18.3 which states “signs must be conspicuous and legible and written in intelligible language so that they are easy to read and understand”.
The signage on site states that, “By parking, waiting or otherwise remaining within this private car park, you agree to comply with this Parking Contract and are authorised to park, only if you follow these terms and conditions. If you fail to comply, you accept liability to pay the fee for unauthorised parking (the "Parking Charge").” Section 13.2 of the British Parking Association states “you should allow the driver a reasonable ‘grace period’ in which to decide if they are going to stay or go”.
The operator confirms that it has a grace period on all sites, which gives the motorist time to enter a car park, park, and establish whether or not they wish to be bound by the terms and conditions of parking.
These grace periods are sufficient for this purpose. The appellant states that he was dropping a relative at the train station and went across the road to get change for parking. He states that he wanted to stay for more than an hour but as it was a Saturday it was a fixed charge so decided to go and park at the train station car park instead.
The appellant says that there was no indication on the signs about how long he could stay before a fine is implemented and the writing was too small. I acknowledge the comments from the appellant however, if you decide to remain at a car park site you must have the means to stay, a grace period is given in order to establish the terms and conditions at the site and should not be used to obtain the means to remain.
By leaving the site to obtain the means is an acceptance of the terms and conditions of contract at the site. if the appellant had considered the terms and conditions prior to establishing if he had the means to remain there would have been sufficient time to leave prior entering into a contract with the operator.
On this occasion the appellant has failed to follow the terms and conditions of the signage at the site and I conclude that the PCN was issued correctly.
Accordingly this appeal should be refused.