Northamptonshire County Council admit to unlawful parking fines


Parking wardens have handed out £3,605 in illegal fines in streets near Northampton General Hospital which was revealed after they admitted the wrongful issuing of a ticket.

William Wright, from Overstone, wrote to Northamptonshire County Council, which is in charge of off-street parking, after his fiancee, Susan Pettitt received a ticket in Cliftonville when picking up her mother from NGH.

He said he was surprised to get a ticket because the ‘no unloading’ sign was on an A4 sheet of paper on a lamp post .

But in a written reply, a parking investigation officer said it had looked into the case and found the kerb markings were not rendered in the way described by the traffic order.

It said: “Therefore, in view of this fact, the charge in this instance has been unlawfully issued and we are withdrawing the penalty.”

However, the letter also revealed that any penalty charge issued in the Cliftonville ‘no unloading’ spaces between November 12–26 were also likely to be invalid.

A spokeswoman for the council said: “Following concerns from blue light services and local residents about obstruction issues, a consultation was carried out to introduce loading restrictions in Cliftonville.

“The new restrictions went live on November 12. However, on November 26, we became aware that the new line markings were incorrect. As a result, we immediately stopped enforcing the new restrictions until the markings were corrected We’ve also cancelled any parking tickets issued here from the 12 to 26th and are in the process of refunding drivers.”

The text of the county council’s letter Mr Wright’s letter:

“Whilst the issuing of the charge was correct in that there had been a contravention observed at the time by the Civil Enforcement Officer, there is a discrepancy between the Traffic Regulation Order, which allows for lawful 
enforecment of the controls in place, and the correct application of kerb markings indicating or sighting the loading ban when the work was undertaken by the Highways Maintenance Contractor.”