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17th May 2022

UK drivers shocked over car park that fines people even if they don’t park

Danny Jones

Scam car park that charges people even if they don't park

Crafty buggers

A local community has been left outraged following complaints about a car park that issues fines to people even if they don’t ultimately end up parking there.

The Sea View car park in Polzeath, a village located in St Minver, Cornwall, has reportedly been fitted with new automatic, licence plate-reading cameras that detect vehicles as soon as they enter and expect you to be paying for your time there straight away.

Put simply, even people who enter the car park but cannot find a spot and ultimately leave have reportedly been caught out with fines of £100 and – unlike most other car parks – there is no grace period whatsoever.

Posting on a community Facebook group, local Andrew Leigh shared images of the car park’s sign and ticket machine alongside the caption, “THIS IS A SCAM”, with dozens leaving comments about their own experiences with this seemingly dodgy system.

Scam car park in Cornwall

Regular user Hazel Belle Thompson commented: “I work locally and got caught out for being 14 minutes over even though I spend £40 at least every week in this car park. I lost a full day’s wages in a parking fine for 14 minutes over”, as per Cornwall Live.

Meanwhile, Vicks Campion added that her “poor mum got a ticket as she sat in the car while I dropped a wet suit off at Ann’s cottage. We were precisely four minutes and 20 seconds.”

Another driver, Alice Watts, said that she didn’t even step out of her vehicle and was charged for her negligible time in the car park: “I drove in and out, didn’t get out of my car as I was just using the car park to turn around as I’ve done a million times over the years. Fined. I appealed. The fine was upheld. Never again.”

As can be read on the sign, not only is there no grace period or access granted to motorhomes, camper vans, caravans and trailers – but there are a number of other strange and overly-strict rules for those using the car park.

While it stipulates that anyone using the car park between 7am-11pm must pay, it also seemingly states that £100 fines will be issued to anyone parked there between 10pm-6am despite having stated 11pm as its cut-off point above.

Perhaps the most ridiculously punitive of all is that if the wheel of your car touches the lines between the next parking space even a little bit, drivers can also incur the harsh £100 fine.

Alliance Parking, who run the space, said in a statement they were made aware of the typo on their sign regarding the 10pm/11pm confusion which has now been corrected. However, they deny that this has caused any fines, nor that anyone has been fined for simply driving in and out.

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