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Euro Car Parks.....Again!


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Firstly, hello to all. This is my first post on here, so here goes:

 

I've been reading some of the posters experiences with Euro car Parks(with some excellent advice posted I must say) but mine is a slightly different problem than that of most ECP 'victims'.

 

I work in a local hospital where we have to pay ECP 20 pence a day to park, taken monthly from our wages(yes, we pay to park in work!) ergo I am a permit holder.

 

I have on Friday been given one of the Police style /look-a-likey Parking Charge Notice by ECP personnel. I was not parked in a recognised ECP car park but an area used by many(mostly night staff) which is a bit closer to the hospital(yes, I'm a bit lazy, but so sre many others there!)

 

The writing on the carbon copied 'ticket' is almost illegible, my VRN is the only thing that is, the exact location is not given in the ..........(fill in blank space)Car Park section, yet I wasn't even in a car park! There is a tick in the Improperly Parked To The Inconvenience Of Other Customers yet it is a virtual cul-de-sac with no through route!

 

As a side issue, ECP employees reserve spaces for themselves on the car park directly outside their office by means of plastic bollards, yet threaten to clamp staff who remove them and park there(though none have been, so far).

 

How do I stand in dealing with these bunch of muppets?:|

 

Thanks in advance to anyone who replies to my first thread.:)

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No different to the other Euro Car Park posts really.

 

Your circumstances are slightly different in that your have a permit to park in the recognised car park, but in this instance you were parked elsewhere, putting you in the situation of any other joe.

 

Best advice is simply to ignore. No instance on the forums of Euro Car Parks taking anyone to court. You will get a couple of reminders with the usual threats then a letter from a debt collection company. At this point, write to the debt collection company stating debt is disputed and should be refered back to euro car parks. If true to form, correspondance should then dry up.

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I suspected as much, was just looking for some re-assurance. As my wife also works there I can always go down the 'prove who was driving' route.

 

Many thanks for the swift reply and re-assurance Barnsley Boy, it is greatly appreciated.

 

My only other concern which was an afterthought is that I am unaware as to whether there is a staff agree to pay fines directly from their wages clause in some small print section.

 

Will let you know how things transpire.

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  • 5 months later...

Dear Barnsley Boy,

 

Please could you read a copy of a letter I sent to ECP on the 2nd of April this year after they sent a letter asking for £50. They never replied to this initial letter but I did get a letter from a debt collection company, namely Controlaccount plc. I explained to them what had happened and forwarded a copy of this letter to them.

 

I have today (23 May) received a letter from ECP saying that my comments are duly noted but my dispute has not been upheld.

 

Any ideas where to go from here? Should I phone them and tell them I'll see them in court with their evidence, in contrast to mine?

 

Any advice greatly appreciated.

 

To Whom It May Concern,

This is a reply to the Unpaid Parking Charge Notice that I received on 2 Apr 08.

There appear to be several major discrepancies with the ‘charge’ you have issued, along with the extremely vague ‘contravention’ I am alleged to have committed. Indeed, there do not appear to be any offences recorded in accordance with the Road Traffic Act 1991.

Firstly, I am a member of staff at XXXXXXX XXXXXX Hospital where the contravention is alleged to have occurred and to that end I am a paying car park pass holder. In return for paying a monthly sum it seems only fair that I would expect to receive a car park space in the Staff car park. This however is not always the case(as I am sure you are fully aware)! On the day in question there were no staff spaces to be found, hence I parked where I did, not wishing to incur charges in the public car parks.

It is here in particular that I take issue with the ‘contravention’, whatever that means. Indeed, it states: OTHER on the letter you sent me. Seems a little vague and broad spectrum to say the least! Whoever issued the ticket wrote: In zoned area blocking sub station.

That is a complete fabrication! The zoned area is not clearly marked (flaked, broken and missing lines), I was barely in the zone and was most certainly NOT blocking any access to the sub-station! In fact I was informed on that day by the engineers who were working there that I “wouldn’t be causing them a problem as long as I parked nowhere near the gates”, hence I parked some 3 metres from them, straddling into the poorly marked ‘zone’. I even took a digital image of where I parked in order to prove that I was not causing any obstruction. Maybe the person issuing the notice did so, did they not? I would be very interested to see the photo if they did! Indeed, I have since taken approximately 25 digital images over the past few weeks of other vehicles which HAVE parked across the gates. What I do find even more strange is that NOT ONE of these vehicles had a Parking Charge Notice attached to their vehicles! Perhaps you can tell me why would that be? It wouldn’t be because any vehicle like mine displaying a valid car park permit is definitely traceable, would it?

I am beginning to wonder if maybe an employee of ECP has a grudge against me for the following reason: I once had a similar problem some weeks before when I turned up for work i.e. no free spaces in the staff car park. There were however 5/6 spaces directly outside the ECP office(surprise surprise!) which were coned off for no particular reason. They were not reserved for Disabled drivers nor Mother and Child parking etc. I went to move one of the cones in order to park when an ECP employee came out of the office and told me I couldn’t park there. When I enquired as to why he couldn’t give me an answer. He did however tell me that “there will be a ticket on it when you get back”. At the end of my shift I returned to my car but there was no ticket as promised. I have also spoken to colleagues who had a similar experience. It then transpired that ECP personnel were using the spaces for their own purpose! Doesn’t really seem fair when hospital staff are driving around looking for spaces, does it?!

In light of this and following the letter I have received from you I am now in discussion with my union as to what course of action to take and intend to take the matter under advisement from a Unison solicitor.

I look forward to any observations and/or comments you may have in regard to ECP personnel reserving their own spaces directly outside their office and threatening staff with ‘tickets’ if the staff used those spaces.

I am most certainly looking forward to seeing any digital images the ticket issuer has in regards to me being parked in a zoned area blocking a sub station and why no tickets appear to have been issued in the interim period to people who most certainly were!

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  • 1 month later...

Having sent them another letter since, (denying responsibility and asking for them to present their evidence in court) I have today received another letter from them stating that it is their intention to make a Civil Claim and this is my final chance to pay before they commence litigation etc, etc and proceddings MAY commence and Judgement sought.

 

Is this a bluff, with the use of the words 'if' and 'may'?.

 

A further paragraph says: If Judgement is obtained blah, blah........

 

Is this possible? In my last letter to them I welcomed the chance to challenge them in any court they choose as I'm sure their evidence would be in stark contrast to mine. Is there any chance I can put my case before a Magistrate? They told me that my comments were noted but my appeal not upheld. I asked them which unbiased third party decided my claim was not upheld?

 

Any thoughts/comments as to how I should proceed please?

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well you did say in your letter "I was parked"..

but still I would ignore. engaging with shysters is always a bad move in my book.

you employer can not take ECP 'fines' from your wages - that would be illegal.

and they aren't 'fines'.

by all means put up a link to a picture of their letter (scrubbed of you personal details). it is highly likely that their letter breaks several laws and puts you in the cat bird seat.

 

Is the car park manned by ECP staff or is it a hospital person/other company employee ?

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Thanks for the reply lamma.

 

Removing my details from the head of the letter from Controlaccount Credit Management, this is it in full:

 

It is a Legal requirement to send notice of an intention to make a Civil Claim before that claim is issued. This letter fulfils that requirement and has been sent to you at the last address we hold for you.

This is your final chance to prevent Litigation being commenced against you: if you ignore this warning then proceedings may commence and Judgement will be sought. The cost relating to such litigation will be added to the amount claimed, together with a statutory rate of 8%.

If Judgement is obtained and an order for repayment in full is granted but remains unpaid, then enforcement of that Judgement against you may be sought by any or all of the following procedures:

Warrant of Execution by Bailiff or Sheriff against goods or assets owned by you or with another

Application for an Attachment of Earnings upon your employer

Attendance in Court to be Orally Examined as to your means and assets.

Application for a charge upon Property, INsurance Policie's and Pension Funds etc which may be owned solely or with others.

 

Cheques or Postal Orders should me made payable to etc, etc......

 

I can't help but wonder if the words Civil Claim, Litigation and Judgement have commenced with capital letter's in order to gain dramatic effect!?

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Just to keep you up to date, this is the second letter I sent to them(should have posted it earlier really!)

 

To Whom It May Concern,

I am in receipt of your letter dated 21 May 08. It appears to have taken 7 weeks to reply to my initial letter to you (dated 2 Apr 08) which outlined my objections to your ‘parking fine’. I am interested to note that during the interim period I have received a letter from a debt collection company, namely Controlaccount plc who alleged that I had failed to contact ECP and that the ‘fine’ had been increased to £75!

I do find it odd that you failed to respond to my first letter, resorting instead to the debt collection company. Having contacted them (I was unable to do so with ECP as there was no return mail address, telephone number or email address) and explained the circumstances they advised me to email them a copy of that, as you had not replied to nor even acknowledged my initial letter. In fact the telephone operator at Controlaccount claimed that you (ECP) had received no correspondence from me! Some 7 weeks later it obviously appears that you did.

As the initial letter I sent you is one of dispute it appears you have failed to adequately substantiate and support your claim that I am indebted to you. I consider this to be harassment, unreasonable, inappropriate and probably unlawful. In addition to my previous denials I totally deny any liability to you for this increased sum.

Furthermore, I am intrigued to know which unbiased third party decided that my ‘dispute has not been upheld’. I was of the view that a Magistrate’s Court would rule on such matters once both parties have submitted their evidence. Indeed, I am more than willing to submit my dossier of documents for perusal and scrutiny at any Court of Law and will readily do so upon request.

Finally, I view your ‘charge’ as unlawful, unenforceable and I am not liable. I will not be providing any payment and I am advised that your continued pursuit of this matter may constitute an offence under the Protection From Harassment Act 1997.

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Just the usual i.e You have x amount of time to pay etc. After my initial letter they stated that whilst my comments were noted my complaint had not been upheld, they had increased my 'fine' to £70 and they wanted me to 'settle up' as it were. Having sent my second letter I have now received this further letter from Controlaccount.

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the exact and complete wording is important - even the headers and footers on the page are.

A picture scrubbed of your details would be good. of each of their letters

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There really is nothing to show.

 

The exact wording is:

Euro Car Parks header with

Parking Services PO Box 32255 London W5 5WW

 

Tel 02089916169

 

Dear Sir/Madam

 

PCN: XXXXX

VRM: XXXXXX

Reference No: XXXXX

Amount Due: £75

 

We refer to your recent query on the above account and whilst your comments have been noted, your dispute has not been upheld.

You may contact us on on the above telephone number if you require further information.

If you do not contact us within 7 days from the date of this letter we would appreciate your cheque in settlement.

Thank you for your prompt attention in this matter.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

Parking Services.

 

That's it.

Edited by Taffyhammer
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Taffyhammer,

 

Apologies for not replying to your earlier postings. I was on holiday last two weeks in May and when I got back, the amount of new threads served to make your posting invisible.

 

Had I had chance to comment on your suggested letter I would have suggested it took them too seriously. Decent honest people such as yourself should not engage with these [problematic] as equals, or even worse, appear to defer to their authority.

 

In the same circumstances I would have either ignored completely [easiest & safest] or, more likely, would have been tempted to write along the lines of:

 

Dear Sirs,

 

I note that you have not "upheld" my dispute. Clearly we shall have to agree to disagree, the dispute does not cease to exist merely because you say so.

 

Please feel free to substantiate any claim that you consider you may have against me in a court of law. Please note that any such action would be vigourously defended.

 

Other than as described above, any further correspondence from you or any other party in relation to this matter may result in a complaint to the authorities under the Protection From Harassment Act 1997.

 

Regards

 

With regard to the latest lettter, it is probably best just to blank. They will either issue MCOL proceedings [very, very very, unlikely - simply not heard of this with Euro Car Parks] or, far more likely, you will get another "last chance" 7 day ultimatum.

 

Once that happens, all their credibility is shot. Why would anyone give you 2 or more "final ultimatums". It is because they simply don't know what else to do - barking dogs with no teeth.

Edited by Barnsley Boy
repeat word
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Barnsley Boy,

 

Many thanks for taking the time to post, it is greatly appreciated.

 

I guessed they're trying to put the frighteners on but they've picked on the wrong person! I'm a little more robust than that.

 

Your post puts me at ease even though I would actually welcome the chance of facing these amateurs across a court room, but I doubt that will happen.

 

Once again, many thanks.

Edited by Taffyhammer
spelling errors!
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  • 2 months later...

Just to update those who have contributed to my thread it is now some 9 weeks since the last letter from ECP and I have not received anything further.

I don't know what sort of timescale these matters take but it's my guess that I'll hear nothing more, fingers crossed!

Thanks to all, particularly Barnsley Boy.

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