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Doncaster Airport - PCN LBC
Even_Key
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 10:19
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Hi everyone,

I've been reading on this forum as well as MoneySavingExpert and I've found everything very helpful. Having said that, this whole issue is incredibly complex and confusing (at least for a simple fella like me).

Anyhoo - here is my situation up to now:

The driver of my car spent less than a minute on double-yellow lines in an area just outside Robin Hood Airport with plenty of space around, on a road/at a time where you'll spot another car once every few minutes.
It just so happened, though, that a traffic control vehicle stopped on the other side of the road right at the same time to take these photos/put this charge through.
So to clarify, I - as keeper - received a PCN, there was no ticket on the windscreen.
For what it's worth, the reason for stopping was that the driver was about to join the motorway and there was a warning light on the dashboard. The driver felt that this area was a much safer place to perform a check, rather than on the motorway.

I responded to the PCN using a template provided on the MoneySavingExpert board and have since received further demands including a statement that they can go after me as registered keeper. I also received a link to a video of the incident. Cleverly they stopped the video just before the car pulled away (all within around 50 seconds total).
I've ignored all further correspondence up until now that I have received a Letter Before Claim.

Since receiving that I've been reading up some more and have come up with some sort of a draft response. I would be grateful if those in the know could take a look at it and make suggestions or rip it to pieces if need be. I must add that I did copy some parts based on a user, SkipO, who has a similar issue to mine.

But here it is:

"Litigation & Debt Department
Vehicle Control Services Limited,
Unit 2 Europa Court ,
Sheffield Business Park,
Sheffield, S9 1XE


Dear Jake,

I am in receipt of your letter, reference Letter Before Claim dated 20th September, 2018.
I strongly reject your claim and am completely bemused at the idea that any terms and conditions could have been breached as at no point were any accepted or even requested to be accepted.

A few things I would like to point out:

• Although your letter is headed LETTER BEFORE CLAIM, it does not conform to the PAP for Debts guide and regulations.

• Looking at the video evidence sent to me by you or a member of your team in an earlier correspondence, I see my vehicle pulled up for a duration of under one minute with hazard lights turned on, suggesting the driver had good reason to come to a temporary stop. This is fully allowed and permitted in the byelaws:

" 5(3) Obstruction except in an emergency, leave or park a Vehicle or cause it to wait for a period in excess of the permitted time in an area where the period of waiting is restricted by Notice."

• Nor the driver or any passenger leaves or enters the car within this short stop.

• Further, the original PCN is a parking charge and the Contravention reason: is 46) STOPPING IN A ZONE WHERE STOPPING IS PROHIBITED.
Therefore, there is no liability accrued to the keeper under POFA, which is strictly limited to parking matters. Furthermore, the land is Not Relevant Land for the purposes of POFA and therefore can NEVER be any liability to the keeper.

• I've since looked at the signage on the road, of which this claim is based, and as far as I'm concerned, this is not signage I have ever been asked to keep an eye out for whilst driving and I imagine the same would go for the driver of the vehicle. If at any point the need for me to further investigate this matter, I am sure I will find that there are many reasons why these signs are not legitimate.

• It is stated that this road is private, therefore you/the landowner can claim whatever you/they like. Yet it is quite clearly a public thoroughfare regularly used as access to not only an international airport but also a number of businesses and even a school.

• If the reasoning for this request for payment is because of any potential obstruction caused by the vehicle in this moment, then it must be pointed out that the person taking this video used as evidence is quite clearly causing a similar level of obstruction on the other side of the road.

This 'charge' is at best opportunist and obscene and must be cancelled. It is a cause of unnecessary stress and a waste of time for everyone involved.
Any attempt to pursue through the court will result in an application to strike out for a no cause of action against the keeper OR any possible driver, and there will be no costs protection available to your client. I will pursue for full costs at £19 per hour.

Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper"

This post has been edited by Even_Key: Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 10:21
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post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 10:19
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nosferatu1001
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 10:26
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Sounds good
Theyll reject and might well take it to court

What would your local court be, if they did?
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Even_Key
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 10:37
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It would be Warwickshire.

Any opinion on my chances if it were to go to court?
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nosferatu1001
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 11:09
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Not seen any negatives from those courts

Yes its pretty good.
DYL permit stopping and loading / unloaindg as per the RTA including the TMA2004. As these roads are accessible to the public, the RTA absoltuely apply, even over byelaws, and they CANNOT sue POFA. VCS also dont usually try - they make smoe rubbish claim about assuming the driver is the keeper.
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Umkomaas
post Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 21:26
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QUOTE
Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper"

Really? Someone trying to screw you for £100, and with possibility of him suing you through the courts, and you sign your formal letter to him 'Regards'.

Oh my!
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Even_Key
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 07:59
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QUOTE (Umkomaas @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 22:26) *
QUOTE
Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper"

Really? Someone trying to screw you for £100, and with possibility of him suing you through the courts, and you sign your formal letter to him 'Regards'.

Oh my!


Ha, good point! Not sent yet, I will duly change.
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Porcupine
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 12:03
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QUOTE (Umkomaas @ Wed, 10 Oct 2018 - 22:26) *
QUOTE
Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper"

Really? Someone trying to screw you for £100, and with possibility of him suing you through the courts, and you sign your formal letter to him 'Regards'.

Oh my!


Exactly, also "Dear Jake" !
I certainly wouldn't be calling Burgess a 'Dear'. You will realise as VCS progress their ridiculous claim against you he is not your friend.

I would be firm without being rude. VCS are not nice people.

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Redivi
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 13:19
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Dear Sir
….
….
….
Yours Faithfully


PS

Please note that the salutation and complimentary close of this letter have been included in accordance with the Oxford Handbook of Commercial Correspondence and should not be regarded as expressions of good disposition towards or faith in your company


This post has been edited by Redivi: Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 13:20
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SchoolRunMum
post Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 18:13
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QUOTE
Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper
As long as you mean the actual email would name the rk and give a postal address, not just sign off literally like that!

You could also add:

QUOTE
Should you proceed with a typical small claims track robo-claim, in the first instance be advised that I intend to contest jurisdiction. Because of the existence of the Airport byelaws, clearly this matter should not be dealt with by the County Court at all. I understand the fee for contesting jurisdiction will set me back £100 and as such, be advised that I will hold VCS liable for my losses on the indemnity basis - including that £100 set aside fee - should you decide to waste my time with a claim, and/or if you later discontinue.
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Even_Key
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:33
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QUOTE (SchoolRunMum @ Thu, 11 Oct 2018 - 19:13) *
QUOTE
Regards,

Registered Vehicle Keeper
As long as you mean the actual email would name the rk and give a postal address, not just sign off literally like that!

You could also add:

QUOTE
Should you proceed with a typical small claims track robo-claim, in the first instance be advised that I intend to contest jurisdiction. Because of the existence of the Airport byelaws, clearly this matter should not be dealt with by the County Court at all. I understand the fee for contesting jurisdiction will set me back £100 and as such, be advised that I will hold VCS liable for my losses on the indemnity basis - including that £100 set aside fee - should you decide to waste my time with a claim, and/or if you later discontinue.



Thanks for this, unfortunately it's a bit too late as I've already sent the letter. I sent it by post. I did not just sign it 'Registered Vehicle Keeper', no, I did add my name.
I did not, though, add my home address. I forgot that. I might email the same letter to them, add my postal address and add that quote of yours re: the £100 fee.

Here's my letter in full, largely thanks to user SkipO:

Without Prejudice

Your Ref: XX/XXX/XXXXXXXXX

Date: XX/XX/XXXX

Litigation & Debt Department
Vehicle Control Services Limited,
Unit 2 Europa Court ,
Sheffield Business Park,
Sheffield, S9 1XE


Dear Sirs,

I am in receipt of your letter, reference Letter Before Claim dated XXth September, 2018.

I strongly reject your claim and am completely bemused at the idea that any terms and conditions could have been breached, as at no point were any accepted or requested to be accepted.

No contract ever existed between Robin Hood Airport or its agents and either myself as registered keeper of the vehicle, registration number XXXX XXX, or the driver of that vehicle at the time.

I remind you that - as previously mentioned - I do not acknowledge that I was the driver of the vehicle at the time and place mentioned in your letter.

A few further details I would like to point out with regards to my rejection of your claim:

• Although your letter is headed LETTER BEFORE CLAIM, it does not conform to the PAP for Debts guide and regulations.

• The purported “notice to keeper” is invalid because it fails to comply with the provisions of the protection of freedoms act 2012, schedule 4.
Furthermore, the road in question is not relevant land for the purposes of paragraph 3(1) of that schedule, as it is subject to statutory control. Therefore your purported “notice to keeper” is nothing more than an unenforceable speculative invoice.

Your claim has no basis in fact or at law.

• Looking at the video evidence sent to me by you or a member of your team in an earlier correspondence, I see my vehicle pulled up for a duration of under one minute with hazard lights turned on, suggesting the driver had good reason to come to a temporary stop.
Insofar as they apply to the road in question, the Doncaster Airport bylaws permit stopping in an emergency.

" 5(3) Obstruction except in an emergency, leave or park a Vehicle or cause it to wait for a period in excess of the permitted time in an area where the period of waiting is restricted by Notice."

• Nor the driver or any passenger leaves or enters the car within this short stop.

• Further, the original PCN is a parking charge and the Contravention reason: is 46) STOPPING IN A ZONE WHERE STOPPING IS PROHIBITED.
Therefore, there is no liability accrued to the keeper under POFA, which is strictly limited to parking matters. Furthermore, the land is Not Relevant Land for the purposes of POFA and therefore can NEVER be any liability to the keeper.

• I've since looked at the signage on the road, of which this claim is based, and as far as I'm concerned this is not signage I have ever been asked to keep an eye out for whilst driving and I imagine the same would go for the driver of the vehicle. If at any point the need for me to further investigate this matter, I am sure I will find that there are many reasons why these signs are not legitimate.

• It is stated that this road is private, therefore you/the landowner can claim whatever you/they like. Yet it is quite clearly a public thoroughfare regularly used as access to not only an international airport but also a number of businesses and even a school.

• If the reasoning for this request for payment is because of any potential obstruction caused by the vehicle in this moment, then it must be pointed out that the person taking this video used as evidence is quite clearly causing a similar level of obstruction on the other side of the road.

This 'charge' is at best opportunist and obscene and must be cancelled. It is a cause of unnecessary stress and a waste of time for everyone involved.
Any attempt to pursue through the court will result in an application to strike out for a no cause of action against the keeper OR any possible driver, and there will be no costs protection available to your client. I will pursue for full costs at £19 per hour.
The LBC states in accordance with Terms and Conditions of Parking.

Yours Sincerely,


My Name
Registered Vehicle Keeper
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nosferatu1001
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:36
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Oh cripes

Why oh why oh why did you title it WITHOUT PREJUDICE?

Do you know what you now cannot do with that letter?
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Even_Key
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:39
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QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:36) *
Oh cripes

Why oh why oh why did you title it WITHOUT PREJUDICE?

Do you know what you now cannot do with that letter?


Oh dear, I don't know? I was informed to put that...
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nosferatu1001
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:46
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It just sounded legal jargony i guess

It means that letter cannot be shown, ever, to a court.
It helps you not one jot

Send another one. As told above

DO NOT put without predjuice.

Who advised you? Its not on this thread.

This post has been edited by nosferatu1001: Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:46
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Even_Key
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:50
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QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:46) *
It just sounded legal jargony i guess

It means that letter cannot be shown, ever, to a court.
It helps you not one jot

Send another one. As told above

DO NOT put without predjuice.

Who advised you? Its not on this thread.


OK, I will send another via email without the 'Without Prejudice' and I'll include the part sent by SchoolRunMum. Is there anything I ought to put in the letter to state that they should consider this letter, rather than the previous one?

As for who advised me, no it was not on this thread, it was from somebody I know who has some experience in such cases.
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nosferatu1001
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 09:53
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they havent got a clue then.
You use WP when negotiatiing a settlement and you dont want the other side to show this negotiaiton in court and try to use it against you
Here you want everything you send t obe useablein court, as it shows you being reaosnable.

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Even_Key
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:16
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QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:53) *
they havent got a clue then.
You use WP when negotiatiing a settlement and you dont want the other side to show this negotiaiton in court and try to use it against you
Here you want everything you send t obe useablein court, as it shows you being reaosnable.


Understood. Thanks.
And so, are you aware of anything I can put that would be beneficial, in this redraft of the letter, to state that this version overrules my previous letter? Or is there no need for me to do such thing?
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nosferatu1001
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:18
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Just state this one corrects and updates the letter of X date, and the previous letter must be disregarded
All you can do.
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Even_Key
post Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 10:23
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QUOTE (nosferatu1001 @ Fri, 12 Oct 2018 - 11:18) *
Just state this one corrects and updates the letter of X date, and the previous letter must be disregarded
All you can do.

Perfect, thanks
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