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    • Hi, I hope that I am posting this in the correct place.  I wonder if I could get some advice please? I had a look through at similar issues but I couldn't find anything up to date. I work at a hospital in Essex.  As a staff member I have a parking permit and buy 'scratchcards' which you use to scratch out the the date you are parking and display alongside your permit in your windscreen. By 8.15 most mornings the staff car parks are full.  Lots of staff have no option but to park elsewhere, these include, parking on double yellow lines or red routes at the side of the roads leading into the hospital, parking at the end of staff car park rows, or in the car parks designated for patient parking. There is an unwritten rule that staff do this and many do, including myself (displaying staff permit and scratchcard for the day) on the occasions that I cant make it into work one hour earlier than I start, I have had to do this on several occasions.  Sometimes the parking company that are contracted by the NHS trust issue PCNs to cars parked in this way.  Again an unwritten rule is that when issued with one of these penalties, the staff member emails in an appeal and they are generally accepted and the notice is dismissed. Over the last 18 months I have had seven of these notices and the first five were dismissed.  However and this is now my problem, the last two have not been accepted and I have been told that I have to pay the fines.  I emailed as usual after receiving both.  (They issue a ticket to the the windscreen of the car) I was told that they were not accepting my appeal.  I subsequently received letters stating I had to pay or they would take further action.   I then emailed these letters to the car park manager of the hospital trust asking him to have a look at them.  (In fact the letters are addressed to my husband as the registered keeper of the vehicle) I took my complaint to him last Wednesday and he has responded today, saying that they cannot waive the fines and that the car parks were not full on those occasions (they were though, this is actually difficult to prove as there is not a system in place to prove or dismiss this) in the email from the car park manager he says that as parking has got worse etc they are having to be stricter etc etc. and that as I have previously had notices, and that there is generally a first time offender lenience, that they cannot do anything now and that I have to pay. In the meantime I have received solicitors letters saying I have to pay £150 for each notice or they are going to recommend that their client takes me to court. I'm in a position where I really want to fight this.  Parking in general at this hospital, is awful (I have purposely not named the hospital trust or the parking company as Im not sure that I should at this stage?)  Staff that start work after 8.15am (sometimes a little earlier but generally that's when the car parks are full) are faced with options as mentioned above.  We all have to pay for parking, each time I have had a valid staff parking permit in place, but they will not accept this defense. Would anyone be willing to advise me on this please?   Thank you in advance.    
    • Boris has approved the use of Huawei. I wish him luck with the US trade negotiations, his mate Donald won't be happy.
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Under-25s falling behind on “priority” bills

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A debt charity has warned that under-25s are struggling to pay priority debts such as council tax and water bills. StepChange Debt Charity has revealed that 22,626 adults under the age of 25 sought help from it last year and that a larger share of that age group were in council tax, electricity, gas and water arrears than any other age group. Some 28% of those under-25s who went to the charity for advice last year had council tax arrears, the average of which was £534, compared to 19% among those aged 25 to 39. Of those in the under 25 age group who went to StepChange, 25% are in arrears with their water bills, against 17% for those between 25 and 39. The average amount owed by under-25s was £323. Delroy Corinaldi, external affairs director at StepChange Debt Charity, said: “Council tax and utility bills are classed as priority debts for a good reason, because the consequences of not paying them are far more serious than other types of debt such as credit cards and personal loans.

 

“It is therefore particularly worrying that young people are struggling with these types of debts more than any other age group. It is crucial that the young are given the support they need to keep up with these essential payments.” The charity warned that the non-payment of council tax can result in imprisonment. Of those aged under 25 who contacted StepChange, 15% are behind on their electricity bills, compared to just 7% among those over 60. The average amount owed by young debtors is £339. Some 14% owed money on their gas bills, the average of which was £338. This compared to 12% among those between 25 and 39, and 7% among the over 60s.

 

Link: http://www.credittoday.co.uk/article/14951/online-news/under-25s-falling-behind-on-priority-bills


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