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PCN Contravention 21 – ISLINGTON BAY SUSPENSION
cc120
post Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 06:40
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I parked my car on my road, on 23rd Jan 2020, not directly outside my house but approx. 5 houses down, as is a busy road since Islington repositioned Arsenal stadium. Also there is now an Arsenal ticket booth shop across the road, approx. 15 houses down. On 6th Feb 2020, I found my car missing. As I saw a suspension notice for 3rd to 5th of Feb, (which was removed by the time I had walked up and down the road looking for my car) and bollards on the pavement around some builder’s works, I suspected the council moved my car. Unfortunately, they didn’t move it to another space on the same road, but around the corner, which I was informed when I rang the council.

I had to tear off the yellow sticker, the blue one came off easily, as I had an appointment.

Do I have any grounds for an appeal?

PCN FRONT

PCN BACK

SUSPENSION NOTICE

YELLOW STICKER

BLUE STICKER

This post has been edited by cc120: Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:53
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stamfordman
post Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:40
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As they relocated the car this usually means you were in the bay before the suspension was put up so you can challenge on this basis.

You say you parked on 23 Jan and the suspension was 3-5 Feb and PCN was 3 Feb. Now you do have a duty to check your car and not just leave it in a bay for weeks without checking the signage and you are asking for trouble if you do.

I wouldn't say what day you parked there only that you did before the suspension (as council log will confirm no doubt).

Post the council's pics - there will probably be one of the sign.

This post has been edited by stamfordman: Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:41
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cc120
post Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:54
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QUOTE (stamfordman @ Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:40) *
As they relocated the car this usually means you were in the bay before the suspension was put up so you can challenge on this basis.

You say you parked on 23 Jan and the suspension was 3-5 Feb and PCN was 3 Feb. Now you do have a duty to check your car and not just leave it in a bay for weeks without checking the signage and you are asking for trouble if you do.

I wouldn't say what day you parked there only that you did before the suspension (as council log will confirm no doubt).

Post the council's pics - there will probably be one of the sign.

Thank you stamfordman.

I have added the Suspension Notice image.

Should I also add all the other photos on the council website?
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cc120
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 12:49
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QUOTE (cc120 @ Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:54) *
QUOTE (stamfordman @ Mon, 10 Feb 2020 - 08:40) *
As they relocated the car this usually means you were in the bay before the suspension was put up so you can challenge on this basis.

You say you parked on 23 Jan and the suspension was 3-5 Feb and PCN was 3 Feb. Now you do have a duty to check your car and not just leave it in a bay for weeks without checking the signage and you are asking for trouble if you do.

I wouldn't say what day you parked there only that you did before the suspension (as council log will confirm no doubt).

Post the council's pics - there will probably be one of the sign.

Thank you stamfordman.

I have added the Suspension Notice image.

Should I also add all the other photos on the council website?

Can anyone offer wording to use?
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Mad Mick V
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 13:59
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OP---are you contending?:-


1. the vehicle was last left at rest at this bay in Drayton Park on 23 January 2020;

2. that you checked that you could properly park the vehicle at that time;

3. there were no suspension advance warning signs when the vehicle was parked there;

4. the vehicle was not moved before the Penalty Charge Notice was issued on 3rd February.

If so, the Council will have a suspension log showing vehicles in situ when the sign went up.

Your case is that you were legally parked. Although there may have been suspension signs up when the Penalty Charge Notice was issued, there were none when the vehicle was last left at rest in this bay, properly parked with a valid permit. Ergo the PCN should be cancelled.

Mick

This post has been edited by Mad Mick V: Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 14:00
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cc120
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 14:34
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QUOTE (Mad Mick V @ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 13:59) *
OP---are you contending?:-


1. the vehicle was last left at rest at this bay in Drayton Park on 23 January 2020;

2. that you checked that you could properly park the vehicle at that time;

3. there were no suspension advance warning signs when the vehicle was parked there;

4. the vehicle was not moved before the Penalty Charge Notice was issued on 3rd February.

If so, the Council will have a suspension log showing vehicles in situ when the sign went up.

Your case is that you were legally parked. Although there may have been suspension signs up when the Penalty Charge Notice was issued, there were none when the vehicle was last left at rest in this bay, properly parked with a valid permit. Ergo the PCN should be cancelled.

Mick

Thank you very much Mad Mick V.

I think I will take stamfordman's advice on 1. ie saying I parked just before notice went up rather than the 23rd?
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stamfordman
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 14:55
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No, just say you parked before but don't say when. it's very important never to tell untruths as there is an audit trail to adjudication if it gets that far and the last thing you want is for the adjudicator to catch you out.

In this case you didn't even notice the car wasn't there til the 6th!

Draft something and post here first.

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hcandersen
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 16:09
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OP, post the council's photos.

We haven't yet established:
Where you car was parked i.e. within the suspended area or not;
When the suspension signs were erected;
Where they were erected in relation to the area to be suspended;
Whether the description of the suspended area is clear i.e. by reference to property numbers alone implies that these numbers are easily visible to a motorist;
Whether it is Islington's policy to notify residents of future suspensions (whether all or only those with permits or only those with permits who might be signed up to a council early warning service) ;
Whether you were parked lawfully notwithstanding the suspension and on what basis e.g. permit holder etc.
Whether you are the owner of the car and whether DVLA registered keeper details are up to date.

OP, you can answer or provide info on most of these.

I suggest you do before considering what you might put in any reps.

And to be clear, just being parked prior to the suspension coming into effect, whether or not the signs were there, is not a cast-iron defence. Adjudicators do not have a consensus view, neither does the Court of Appeal, although from what we do know their view is that being in a suspended bay is a strict liability as regards the motorist, but this does not relieve a council of its duty to sign clearly.

The 14-day discount period ends on 16 Feb.

This post has been edited by hcandersen: Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 16:10
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Incandescent
post Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 19:24
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I think the OP is being a bit naive to think one can park in London for quite some days and never bother checking the car and for suspension notices at regular intervals. If the suspension started on Monday 3rd Feb, then one would expect signs to be erected early the previous week. This takes us back to Monday 27th January or possibly Tuesday 28th, yet the OP parked-up on Thursday 23rd January and didn't return to the car until 6th Feb, a day after the suspension ended ! The council clearly recorded the car as present when the suspension took effect as the car was moved, not towed to the pound. If it had been towed the OP would have been liable for much more money.

FWIW, I don't think the council should have issued a PCN, they should have just moved the car, but the prospect of making the move a "nice little earner" was too tempting, as it always is for London councils. Remember this is a permit holder, a resident. But do the officials care? No, not one iota.

So I think it is right to submit reps. The trouble is, if they are refused, we already know the somewhat schizophrenic attitude of London Tribunals to appeals on this problem. Much depends on what adjudicator hears the case, and what they had for breakfast that morning !



This post has been edited by Incandescent: Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 19:32
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 00:42
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QUOTE (stamfordman @ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 14:55) *
No, just say you parked before but don't say when. it's very important never to tell untruths as there is an audit trail to adjudication if it gets that far and the last thing you want is for the adjudicator to catch you out.

In this case you didn't even notice the car wasn't there til the 6th!

Draft something and post here first.

Thank you stamfordman.
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 01:06
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QUOTE (hcandersen @ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 16:09) *
OP, post the council's photos.

We haven't yet established:

1 Where you car was parked i.e. within the suspended area or not;
2 When the suspension signs were erected;
3 Where they were erected in relation to the area to be suspended;
4 Whether the description of the suspended area is clear i.e. by reference to property numbers alone implies that these numbers are easily visible to a motorist;
5 Whether it is Islington's policy to notify residents of future suspensions (whether all or only those with permits or only those with permits who might be signed up to a council early warning service) ;
6 Whether you were parked lawfully notwithstanding the suspension and on what basis e.g. permit holder etc.
7 Whether you are the owner of the car and whether DVLA registered keeper details are up to date.

OP, you can answer or provide info on most of these.

I suggest you do before considering what you might put in any reps.

And to be clear, just being parked prior to the suspension coming into effect, whether or not the signs were there, is not a cast-iron defence. Adjudicators do not have a consensus view, neither does the Court of Appeal, although from what we do know their view is that being in a suspended bay is a strict liability as regards the motorist, but this does not relieve a council of its duty to sign clearly.

The 14-day discount period ends on 16 Feb.

Thank you for your help hcandersen.

1 There are numerous images on the council website establishing that my car was parked within the suspended area. Would it be worth my posting them on here?
2 Islington usually give one weeks warning notice of bay suspension, but in this case was for waterworks and so may have been an emergency, perhaps less time was given. Here is Islingtons' bay suspension policies: https://www.islington.gov.uk/parking/parkin...d-a-parking-bay
3 The notice was stuck over the regular parking info sign, situated next to my car, ie permit holders only between 10am to 2pm, Zone G.
4 From the location of my parked car, I would have seen at least 1 of the house numbers. On foot could have determined the rest.
5 I possess a residents permit (bought and stored online by Islington). I am not aware of a digital early warning system of bay suspensions for permit holders.
6 I was parked lawfully, ie in resident permit holders parking bay
7 Owner from new and all documentation correct and up to date.

As the discount period ends on 16 Feb, if I was to appeal on 12/13/14/15, will the discount period extend until the council replies to the appeal?

This post has been edited by cc120: Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 01:08
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 01:17
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QUOTE (Incandescent @ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 19:24) *
I think the OP is being a bit naive to think one can park in London for quite some days and never bother checking the car and for suspension notices at regular intervals. If the suspension started on Monday 3rd Feb, then one would expect signs to be erected early the previous week. This takes us back to Monday 27th January or possibly Tuesday 28th, yet the OP parked-up on Thursday 23rd January and didn't return to the car until 6th Feb, a day after the suspension ended ! The council clearly recorded the car as present when the suspension took effect as the car was moved, not towed to the pound. If it had been towed the OP would have been liable for much more money.

FWIW, I don't think the council should have issued a PCN, they should have just moved the car, but the prospect of making the move a "nice little earner" was too tempting, as it always is for London councils. Remember this is a permit holder, a resident. But do the officials care? No, not one iota.

So I think it is right to submit reps. The trouble is, if they are refused, we already know the somewhat schizophrenic attitude of London Tribunals to appeals on this problem. Much depends on what adjudicator hears the case, and what they had for breakfast that morning !

Thank you Incandescent.

I have read other boroughs do tow permit holders cars from suspended bays to pounds causing £100's of bills.

I'm supposing the PCN is a smack on the wrist to ensure I keep a closer eye on the car, and not cause the additional trouble of their having to move it.

This post has been edited by cc120: Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 01:44
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 01:45
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QUOTE (cc120 @ Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 00:42) *
QUOTE (stamfordman @ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 - 14:55) *
No, just say you parked before but don't say when. it's very important never to tell untruths as there is an audit trail to adjudication if it gets that far and the last thing you want is for the adjudicator to catch you out.

In this case you didn't even notice the car wasn't there til the 6th!

Draft something and post here first.

Thank you stamfordman.

APPEAL

Dear Sir/Madam

RE: PCN Number (also in subject line)

I am writing to appeal against this notice on the following grounds:

When I parked my car at the bay in question, with a valid permit, I checked that I could properly park the vehicle at that time. Although there may have been suspension signs up when the Penalty Charge Notice was issued, there were none when I left my car.
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hcandersen
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 07:26
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@Incandescent,

FWIW, I don't think the council should have issued a PCN, they should have just moved the car


They cannot, I'm afraid.

The power available to the enforcement authority to move the vehicle arises only after a PCN has been issued at which point the authority may just leave in situ, move to another place on a road or to a place off the road.

OP, as regards your question: see para. 6 under the heading How to Challenge on the reverse of the PCN.
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stamfordman
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 08:46
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QUOTE (hcandersen @ Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 07:26) *
The power available to the enforcement authority to move the vehicle arises only after a PCN has been issued at which point the authority may just leave in situ, move to another place on a road or to a place off the road.



Indeed. See this story:

The PCNs issued are cancelled without the need for the motorist to contact us.

https://www.mylondon.news/news/west-london-...-after-12641459

This was a same day situation. One wonders at what point an authority should cancel automatically for cars in bay when signs went up. No doubt there is only local policy.
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 15:26
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QUOTE (hcandersen @ Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 07:26) *
@Incandescent,

FWIW, I don't think the council should have issued a PCN, they should have just moved the car


They cannot, I'm afraid.

The power available to the enforcement authority to move the vehicle arises only after a PCN has been issued at which point the authority may just leave in situ, move to another place on a road or to a place off the road.

OP, as regards your question: see para. 6 under the heading How to Challenge on the reverse of the PCN.

Thank you hcandersen, HOW TO CHALLENGE - para. 6:' If we receive representations against the penalty charge not later than the last day of the period of 14 days beginning with the date on which the Notice is served, but reject the challenge, we will allow a further 14 days from the date on which the rejection letter is issued in which to pay the reduced penalty charge.'
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 16:00
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QUOTE (stamfordman @ Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 08:46) *
QUOTE (hcandersen @ Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 07:26) *
The power available to the enforcement authority to move the vehicle arises only after a PCN has been issued at which point the authority may just leave in situ, move to another place on a road or to a place off the road.



Indeed. See this story:

The PCNs issued are cancelled without the need for the motorist to contact us.

https://www.mylondon.news/news/west-london-...-after-12641459

This was a same day situation. One wonders at what point an authority should cancel automatically for cars in bay when signs went up. No doubt there is only local policy.

stamfordman, here is another appeal draft. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

I am writing to appeal against this notice on the following grounds:

When I parked my car at the bay in question, with a valid permit, I checked that I could properly park the vehicle at that time. Although there may have been suspension signs up when the Penalty Charge Notice was issued, there were none when I left my car.

In addition, clearly, by just moving my car round the corner, Islington council recognise that I was parked before the suspension came into effect. In the circumstances a PCN is unfair. I regularly check my car, but was unable to do so at my normal interval, but was not aware of the signs earlier in the week before the suspension.  
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cc120
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 18:53
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Anyone?
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stamfordman
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 21:02
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I am challenging the PCN on the grounds that my car was legally parked in the bay with my residents permit before you suspended the bay. Therefore the contravention did not occur.

Please would you consult your suspension log to confirm that this was the case and note that you relocated the car, which I assume means that my car was indeed parked in the bay before you suspended it.

I look forward to your early cancellation of this PCN.


This bit:
I regularly check my car, but was unable to do so at my normal interval, but was not aware of the signs earlier in the week before the suspension.

is this true and why were you unable to check?
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hcandersen
post Wed, 12 Feb 2020 - 22:19
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The OP can include opinion in their challenge e.g. that simply because a sign was not erected then a contravention cannot occur etc.

For reasons discussed at length in other threads this is a view not case law.

@stamfordman, your article does not address the legal issues.

May an authority move a car?

Yes. If it's been issued with a PCN.

Does being issued with a PCN prevent them from cancelling at a later stage?

No. It would be a clear abuse of power to not consider reps simply because a vehicle had been moved therefore the same considerstion must be given as in every other case.

If a PCN is subsequently cancelled does this prove that the PCN should not have been issued in the first place and the vehicle not moved?

Clearly not. A CEO can only see what they see. An onboard CEO can only see the PCN and evident contravention. Neither knows the motorist's side of the story which when presented to the authority by the recipient could lead to the PCN being cancelled.
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