Outrage over ‘unjust’ Hastings parking permit fine

Maurice Hope believes it is not fair not to remind people about renewing their parking permits
Maurice Hope believes it is not fair not to remind people about renewing their parking permits
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A Hastings builder was outraged after receiving a fine for having no parking permit because he did not receive a reminder in the post.

Maurice Hope, of Stonefield Road, was horrified to see his van had a ticket outside his house and he soon realised his permit was two weeks out of date on Monday, July 11.

The 57-year-old self-employed labourer was told East Sussex County Council no longer sends out reminder letters when he complained at the parking shop in Kings Road, St Leonards.

The council told the Observer reminder emails are now used instead but can sometimes go into junk folders but it did agree to cancel Mr Hope’s fine.

Nevertheless the builder was very angry he did not get a reminder and believed it was not just to charge people when they did not realise it was due for renewal.

“How’s it taken the parking people two weeks to realise I haven’t had a permit,” he said.

“I think it’s an injustice and wrong. It’s not just me, I bet there’s been thousands of tickets given out unfairly.”

Mr Hope said there were ‘10 or 15’ people complaining about being given a penalty charge notice (PCN) for not having a permit as they were not reminded to renew.

“The funny thing is it’s been parked outside my house for the last three years and I’ve always had a permit on it but now they have decided to change their system,” he said.

“Considering that they have always reminded people and then this year to stop doing it, I think, is totally wrong.

“I want to warn other to check their permits.”

A council spokesman said reminder letters were stopped once virtual permits were introduced and emails are sent out instead.

“In some cases, these emails are going into junk folders where they are not checked and we would urge permit holders to add the RingGo email address to their contact list to ensure that reminders are received,” the spokesman said.

“In this case, our system shows that a reminder email was sent a month before the permit expired but we have agreed to cancel the PCN on this occasion.”

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