FURTHER to previous letters regarding parking charge Notices issued by HX Car Park Management Ltd at the Cartmel Racecourse car park, I also have fallen foul of this company while visiting Cartmel Priory (Letters, December 12, 2019, 'We won't be going back' and December 5, 2019, 'Concern over £100 charge').

The company is using a stupid excuse to say my parking ticket was invalid. I have never used a car parking machine where you have to key the full registration into the machine, as the parking machines in south Cumbria only require the last three letters of your registration or just the valid ticket to be displayed.

The photos provided on the parking charge notice clearly correlate that the details on the ticket and my car are one and the same, and the timings of arrival and departure met the time allowed for what I had paid. No attempt to defraud payment was made.

After appealing to the company it said I was in breach of its rules and as such have to pay the £100 fine, but I could appeal further to its independent appeals service (managed by its own solicitors).

Having read the reviews of others who have been fined by this company throughout the North, I feel this would have been wasted effort and money.

I definitely won’t be using the car park again.

Paul Littlewood


Editor's note: the Gazette contacted HX Car Park Management Ltd and here is the response from Ellie Berkeley, parking charge notices (PCN) administration team leader:

"The terms and conditions of the site are clearly stated on signage, and the signage is audited, and passed, by the International Parking Community prior to our issuing of parking charge notices (PCNs) on the site. It also stated on the pay-and-display machine to enter your full and exact vehicle registration. I have attached a copy of our signage (see www.thewestmorlandgazette.co.uk).

In my experience working in the parking industry, and as a driver, I have never come across a car park where only a partial registration is required as it is not uncommon for vehicles to have similar registrations. Also, foreign and private registrations wouldn’t necessarily have three letters at the end. We are unaware of any company that would ask for that as it would create a loophole for some drivers to evade payment based on that technicality.

Despite the reader claiming they could prove they paid, this does not mean they have not contravened. If we accepted appeals on this basis, it would be unfair to those that paid under the wrong registration but disposed of the ticket, therefore unable to prove it. We already allow a two-digit error margin for human error and all drivers that exceed this are liable for a PCN.

I will also state that the Independent Appeals Service is certainly not managed by our solicitors. It is completely separate from us; the appeals are sent off to independent adjudicators who look into the appeals, once both we and the drivers have put forward our evidence."