More shoppers have been stung with £100 fines on a Stoke-on-Trent car park.
They have been slapped with the penalties after using the car park outside Sports Direct and Matalan, off Heathcote Road, in Longton.
Previous problems have centred around customers who have shopped in the stores not being able to access their free parking despite being on the car park for less than an hour.
But StokeonTrentLive readers have now reported issues with the disabled parking, out-of-order machines, and fines for simply driving around the car park without stopping.
It comes as Stoke-on-Trent South MP Jack Brereton has written to the car park operator and the two stores to raise constituents’ issues.
Kelvyn Buxton-Davies is one of many motorists to land a fine.
He said: “They got us at Christmas. Our disabled badge was displayed and the machines had not been working. They sent us a ticket and I appealed it. I got told tough, pay it now and it’s £60 instead. So we paid it and just won’t use it again. It must be a right headache for the staff that work in those stores.”
Lydia Quinn said: “My 82-year-old nan has had two of these fines from outside Matalan, in Longton, in the past four weeks. She has a disabled blue badge and still scanned her ticket when she left Matalan after purchasing products. She will not be shopping there again, instead she will be going to Wolstanton where it is free parking.”
Fellow victim Christine Howden said: “I was simply doing a click and collect order which took ages due to the queues and the stupid self-service tills. I had parked in a disabled bay as always. I appealed – and lost. It is the last time I ever shop at Matalan. It is a money-grabbing exercise.”
Laura Minton is still challenging her parking penalty.
She said: “I’ve had a fine. I scanned my receipt on the parking meter and it said I did’t need to pay anything so I didn’t and then a week later I had a £100 fine. I’ve not paid and I’ve still got the receipt and the fine to appeal.”
Michael Maddison added: “I’ve stopped going to Longton now for this very reason. It is just as easy to go to Tunstall instead – and all free parking.”
Some motorists have been hit with fines are only being on the car park for a matter of minutes.
Paula Twigge said: “I drove on just before Christmas to pick up a click and collect. I realised I had left my bag with my phone and purse at home. My phone had got the reference number on it so I knew I wouldn’t be able to pick up my parcel so I came home.
“I hadn’t even turned my engine off – and I got a £60 fine.
“I’ve only been back to Matalan once since – and that was to return all of my items as soon as I received the fine. And when they asked why I was returning them I told them why and I vowed to never go there again.”
Leigh Lawton said: “I got stung by this last year. I was parked for less than 10 minutes and got a £100 fine and yet it does state parking is free if under an hour.”
Jill Jackson said: “I drove on and off the car park and got a fine because it had taken a photograph of my vehicle. It was a nightmare.”
The camera-controlled car park has a three-hour maximum stay, pay-on-exit parking, and card-only payments. Motorists are charged 60p for up to one hour, £1.20 for up to two hours, and £1.80 for up to three hours.
Anyone who parks for less than an hour can park for free if they buy an item from either store and then scan their receipt at the machine.
But many shoppers say they have been unable to claim their free parking after failing to scan their receipt – and instead landed the £100 fine.
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Claire Fallows hass managed to overturn her parking penalty.
She said: “I parked on there and the machine was out of order so I took a photo and still got a parking fine.
“I appealed twice, online and in writing, and they rejected both appeals so I went for an independent appeal and finally won.”