Chester City Council try to sting me on parking fine

Is my car cursed or what? The car that was stolen, crashed into and the subject of my ex-wife’s insurance fraud has now been hit with a £50 parking fine by Chester City Council, even though I couldn’t actually pay!

I went to Chester today to shop for shoes, and being a sized 12 it was very difficult (but I’ll rant about that another time). I entered the car park and parked at the bottom, next to the Pay Station. When I put a £2 coin in the machine, it came back out – together with another 2 £1 coins. I was £2 up already, result!

However I didn’t have a ticket, so I tried the £2 coin again. It came back out. Then I tried a £1 coin, and it came back out. I then made my way up to the other Pay Station in the car park (and by this time it was starting to snow heavily) where I tried both the £2 and £1 coins again. Same result; they came back out.

I went back to the first Pay Station, where my car was parked, to find a woman having the same problem. I told her that neither machine was working, and she couldn’t get a ticket either. I saw that some cars had tickets, but others didn’t. Assuming the machines were now full, I went into town to shop.

When I returned around 3 hours later I found I had been given a £50 fine for not displaying a ticket.

Obviously I’m not paying it. I tried to pay the £4.90 for 4 hours, but neither machine would take my money. No way am I paying a fine when the fault lies with the Pay Stations that didn’t work.

I’ll appeal this and let everyone know what happens. If I have to go to court I will. If they get away with this they have carte blanch to charge everyone £50 for parking there.

No doubt quite a few cars received fines today, which must strike them as unusual.

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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