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Flyyyte

EuroCarParks "Notice to Keeper". Appeal it? Ignore it?

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I have, over the years, sympathised with many motorists caught up in the great bounty hunt of private parking penalties. But it never occurred to me that I'd be one of them: so much for naivety /optimism.

 

A couple of weeks ago, my wife and I went shopping at a Marks & Spencers store some 20 miles away from us. It had a small car park within which customer parking was free for a prescribed period of time. We read the notice in the car park and are convinced we abided by its T&Cs. Wd did not, however, take a photograph of the signage.

 

Today, a preposterous letter has arrived from that pillar of probity, Justice and goodwill to all, Euro Car Parks, saying parking charge notice amount due: £85.00, payment to be made by 22/11/2019. (There's the usual oh-so generous "discount" for paying early: £35 knocked off the bill.)

 

The barely literate accusatory section of the so-called 'Notice' reads as follows: "We are using cameras to capture images of vehicles entering and leaving the car park to calculate their length of stay. The signage, which is clearly displayed at the entrance and throughout the car park, states that this is private land, (sic) the car park is managed by Euro Car Parks and sets out the terms and conditions of the car park by which those who park in the car park agree to be bound. This Parking Charge notice x123456789yz has been issued as the vehicle was in breach of the following terms and conditions:

 

your vehicle was parked longer than the maximum period allowed

 

The vehicle was parked at Marks & Spencer, (location and postcode), by remaining at the car park without authorisation, in accordance with the terms and conditions set out in the signage, the Parking Charge is now payable to Euro Car parks (as the Creditor).

 

Obviously, I'm not going to pay this bunch of illiterates £85, £50, or anything like it. But I find it hugely irritating that it has sent me a demand for money without any substantiation of claim (other than a couple of fuzzy photographs of my vehicle's number plate).

 

My first thought was that it was laziness /incompetence / stupidity that brought about the omission, whereas I'm now of the opinion that the omission of the actual T&Cs which I'm alleged to have so expensively breached is an act of deliberate withholding, the company's hope being that I will actually live too far from the location to be able to  revisit it and check out the signage for myself. 

 

Must be a nice little earner, if you're Euro Car Parks, and you can extract sums of money from gullible vulnerable people to whom you have deliberately denied actual evidence of claim, i.e., the specific wording of the T&Cs allegedly breached.

 

Just to clarify: the "Notice" says we parked from 12.19.42 to 14.10.14 on the day/date in question, that duration being longer than the maximum time allowed. I'm not disputing the timing.As can be seen, the duration is less than 2 hours, and as both my wife and I remember from our viewing of the signage, up to 2 hours free parking was granted to Marks & Spencer's customers. (And yes, we have our credit car records as proof of being exactly that).

 

We might, next week, tootle off out into the country again and pop into the store's car park just to refresh our memory. For now though, I'm not about to engage in Proustian discussion with Eurocarparks, but instead appeal the notice on the basis that  the claim lacks substantiation.

 

The fact that Eurocar parks thinks it can get away with behaving like this (thank Gawd we don't live 200 miles from the car park in question)  is something I might subsequently wish to take up with the DVLA,  seeing as how it is as much a profiteer in the civil parking charge recovery racket as any.

 

However, given the fact that the letter-of-claim is unsubstantiated in its most crucial aspect, I'm tempted to file a succinct  online appeal pointing out that the company's conduct is unreasonable and unprofessional, and that absent proof of claim, I am not prepared to consider the matter further. (There are 28 days to appeal via eurocarparks.com online form).

 

Question: what would you do?

 

IGNORE . . .  Or APPEAL??

 

 

 

 

Edited by Flyyyte

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Ignore - get the photos of the signs pronto before they change anything.

 

Dates are vital here too for them to create any liability so can you complete the link that is on other threads, also lets see front & back of the ntk (redacted of your personal info & bar codes etc).

 

What location? The only person you should be making contact with is the store manager from M&S. They can instruct the parasites to cancel. Perhaps they would like your goods returned since you weren't advised that there would be an additional £85 charge for them that would be invoiced afterwards?

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Mrs O'Frog, I can't post links from my phone but I think the forum sticky would be worth posting if you have time please. 

 

HB

 

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Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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I think what you have to do is arrive on the hour and leave on the hour.

That way the amoebas in their office can easily work out how long you actually stayed for.

Arriving 19 minutes after the hour and leaving at 10 minutes after another hour gives them a headache so as a punishment they send you a parking ticket.

 

There is obviously no need to pay them.

Nor should you appeal or complain to them.

They cannot read and they just want your money regardless of the legality of their demand.

 

Also before they have the right to claim any money from you they have to observe certain Regulations and they tend to fall flat on their faces when trying it. 

 

Usually we ask for certain details such as signage to see where these crooks have gone wrong.

But in this case we know where they have gone wrong if you were entitled to 2 free hours.

 

As you have the credit card payment as proof of purchase at Marks it should be quite simple to get Marks to squash this ticket.

Just ask for the manager and explain that as a regular customer you don't expect to be charged for parking when you shop at their store and observe the parking terms.

 

As an aside, even if the free time was less than 2 hours, the fact that you shopped there for about that time, it would not be unreasonable to squash the charge anyway.

Marks do not have enough customers to be able to lose customers spending money in their stores.

 

It would help that you answer the questions above and post up the PCN just in case you get no joy from Marks.

 

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Thanks, everyone, for the prompt responses and advice. Just to clarify -- and many thanks to Mrs O'Frog for posting the advisory link --  the correspondence received from Euro Car Parks is NOT in the guise of a "penalty charge notice".

Rather, it is headed: NOTICE TO KEEPER and, further down the page, features a large oblong panel whose boundary is delineated in red ink. Within that panel appears this text:

 

PARKING CHARGE NOTICE AMOUNT DUE: £85.00

 

Beneath that is the text quoted in my OP incorporating the unsubstantiated accusation that I broke the Terms & Conditions of parking there (but without going into detail as to what those T&Cs actually were.)

 

As lookinforinfo has so accurately discerned, the car park notice which both my wife and myself read and took note of allowed up to 2 hours free parking if you were an M&S customer, which we collectively were. We parked up at 12.19pm and left around 10 minutes short of 2 hours later. I agree with lookinforinfo that the amoeba responsible for trying to make a living out of this kind of 'enforcement' activity are as likely to be incapable of adding up as they are of punctuation, and so I can foresee that the Parking Charge notice was issued in error.

 

Equally though, I can also see how profitable it must be for any unscrupulous business in this sector to deliberately withhold important facts in pro forma monetary demands for breaching signage T&Cs, gambling that as the target might  be too far from the specified location and unable to readily return to it, they will therefore pay up.

 

I don't believe the correspondence I've received is entirely unique to me, rather that it is a sample of the stuff winged out by Euro Car Parks to all alleged offenders, the staff responsible for the letter's despatch not having much sense of geography either, but just hoping that there's a lot of miles between the alleged offender's address and the address of the car park where the alleged parking breach occurred so that they won't be able to go back and check what the T&Cs are.

 

I'm not going to undertake at an early date a 40-mile round trip to re-check the signage, particularly as both myself and my wife are entirely clear in our recollection of what it actually said, as is our memory of how we legislated for that in terms of our less-than-2-hours-parking-duration.

 

When we do return, we will -- as lookinforinfo recommends -- seek out the store manager;  and be interested to learn (if the information is available) if any /how many other M&S customers have been in touch with the store about the same issue.

 

I don't know why, but my hackles are a bit high at the moment, the nagging thought that there's more to this than just an innocent mistake by an incompetent organisation.  I think I'll run a quick google search into  local newspapers of recent date, see if anyone else has had a punitive experience at that location -- and, perhaps, paid up: some folks in this part of the world do still write a Letter to The Editor when "outraged" about traffic wardens, parking tickets, and what they describe as "parking fines".

 

Pending that, it seems to me that responding promptly via the so-called Euro Car Parks appeal process to say I don't have any idea what they're talking about or claiming for because of the regrettable absence of relevant fact is the best course to follow -- doing so as much for the record as anything else, seeing as how this outfit would never have bothered me had it not been for a government agency selling my name and address data to it, a point I shall be making to the DVLA in due course.

 

There. Thanks everyone. Looks like I've now just made the decision for myself. 🤗

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Try route 1 and give M&S head office a call and tell them that 2 hours customer parking is allowed and your charge is thus just cobblers and do they want to be  associated with this event when it is widely circulated that they are employing people who use deception at at best criminal incompetence to manage their estate for them.

See my new post on a problem for a Sainsburys customer, persistence with the M&S chief exec's office is a must. The local store wont have the power to intercede so just pick up the phone and call head office,

In the meanwhile I suggest that you do not contact the parking co as they are as greedy as they are stupid but will tell the store that they ahve sorted  the matter out when all they will do is send another demand having told you your appeal has failed.

 

BTW, the NTK you have posted up fails to pass the necessaries to create a liability under the POFA as they have failed to say what it is you have doen wrong. Just claiming you are wrong isnt enough, it must be a specific breach of one of the condition as advertised, a generic waffle doesnt fit in with the law but this is for later.

 

I have just posted a thread on a simialr case at sainsburys Wandsworth so have a read

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Sincere thanks, ericsbrother, for your post and apologies for this unintentionally belated reply. Your thoughtfulness is much appreciated.  I've decided my time is worth too much for me to get into a dispute with this company at this ateg. I've appealed on the basis that their claim is without justification because they have chosen to withhold evidence essential to support of their allegation. I've also put that in writing and sent it as a pdf attachment to the online "appeal", seeing as how they deliberately omit to provide room online for any textual submission, but insist on having attachments" instead. Well, they now have mine.

 

I take your point about their 'generic waffle'. My wife and I regularly shopa t M&S, Penrith, and until that last visit, its car park had been pay-and-stay, with a partial refund being made by the store according to how much you spent. The pay to stay machines had all gone by the time we made that last trip, so we took particular care to find the new notices with their tediously lengthy Terms & Conditions, and are absolutely certain that the free customer [parking limit was 2 hours -- hence, why we made damn sure we were in and out within that time.

 

Euro Car parks is onto a nice little earner if it thinks it can get away with intimidating people into paying it whatever it demands because they live too far from the location to be able to check the Eurocar parks signage. If the company wishes to deny it's running a [problem], then it can tell me that in due course. Meantime, I  want the DVLA to explain how come it is endorsing behaviour of this kind.

 

I hadn't had time to redact the documentation but have done so now. It's attached herewith.

001 Europarks claim page 001.jpg

appeal acknowledged.JPG

Protection of Freedoms Schedule 4.pdf

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Hi.

 

Can you tell us what you said in the appeal please? Also, how did you get on with M&S?

 

The reason we don't normally encourage people to appeal to parking companies is that appeals are rarely granted. Plus you've given them an email address so they can harrass you for free.

 

I expect the others will comment soon.

 

HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Plus by appealing people usually remove the protections under POFA by identifying themselves as the driver, removing an avenue to clobber them with if they try court with their ill conceived RobOclaim, useless POC.


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So you ask for advice as to whether you should appeal or ignore. Everyone said not to appeal to the parking company, only M&S. You appeal to the parking company. Why???? 🤦‍♀️

 

Lets see the appeal you sent. We need to know what we're working with now in case you've scored an own goal.

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Yes we need to see what your appeal says, it is so easy to shoot yourself in the foot, these are Civil matters, and rely on law of Contract.


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If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

The bailiff: A 12th Century solution re-branded as Enforcement Agents for the 21st Century to seize and sell debtors goods as before Oh so Dickensian!

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I've already expressed my gratitude to all those who responded to my OP.

 

The advice received was invaluable in helping me determine which way to go, a decision which came down to whether or not I want to bother with Europarks or not.

 

On due consideration, ignoring it seemed inadvisable; there is enough in this situation to infuriate, and even though my time is valuable, my self respect is actually more so.

 

My wife and I have a familiarity with several different aspects of civil Law, though not this particular one (had such been the case, I would never have posted here.)

 

As things stand however, I'll not be posting anything else on CAG unless by way of an update in the event of further developments, the sharing of which news would hopefully be of relevance / benefit to others.

 

Meanwhile, elsewhere in Cumbria, it seems Euro Car parks is on a roll; our (so far minimal) research has turned up this gem, albeit the situation as described there has no resemblance to our own.

 

Still worth a read though for anyone interested in how Euro Carparks is giving every appearance of trying to make its money  out of finessing the definition (or trying to finesse the definition)  of what is a parked vehicle and what is not:

 

https://www.thewestmorlandgazette.co.uk/news/17703804.fury-over-car-park-operation-at-marks-and-spencer-store-in-kendal/

 

 

 

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you ignore it till the time they or one of their fake/tame paperwork only solicitors issues a letter of claim.

 

and as per usual the media want to sensationalise things and call it a FINE...which ofcourse they are  not and never can be

 

dx

 


please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

 

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