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FightBack Forums > Queries > Council Parking Tickets & Clamping and Decriminalised Notices
QuackingPlums
Hi!

I live in an new-build apartment development that has an underground carpark, entry to which is controlled by remote-controlled gates.
The underground carpark consists only of privately owned parking spaces, costing up to £15000 each.
Owners of each apartment are issued with a zapper that opens the gate nearest to their parking space, however new ones may be purchased in case of loss/theft/etc.

Recently, it has been spotted that non-residents/owners have been entering the carpark (probably by finding lost zappers, fraudulently ordering new ones or just tail-gating other residents into the carpark!) and parking in spaces that look like they haven't been used in a while. The problem was raised to the management company, who have now employed Central Ticketing to deal with the problem.

Central Ticketing have put up the following signs all over the carpark and at each entrance gate:

(I found this elsewhere on this forum when I performed a search for Central Ticketing so it isn't mine, but the wording is exactly the same bar the middle line saying "RESIDENT PERMIT HOLDERS ONLY")

Separate A4 photocopied notices are in the lobbies of each apartment block instructing owners to obtain parking permits to display in their vehicles, as Central Ticketing will be clamping cars without them.

My questions are as follows:
1. Does Central Ticketing have the authority to clamp on what is effectively MY LAND if I choose not to display my permit/it falls off/etc?
2. If they do not, then presumably that applies to all bays, in which case we still can't shift the illegal parkers?
3. Do the A4 printed notices even constitute legally binding signs?

I appreciate what the management company are trying to do, however I don't think they've gone about it the right way. If we still can't get rid of the illegally parked cars then I'm not going to jump through hoops to help out this company - and I will certainly contest any penalty or clamping they attempt on me or my car - would I have a case?
zamzara
They can't clamp at all based on that notice. If they did it would be a serious criminal offence.

I'm not sure about ticketing: if you actually own the land then they can't, but if the space is just rented then it might be more complex.

Also note that you don't have to display the permit, just hold one. I love how they can't seem to get anything right!
MartinHP71
Hiya

Do you own the freehold to your parking space or do you lease it from the owner on a 99 year lease in line with the flat/house ?

Have you given the management company the right to act upon your behalf or are they acting on the landlords behalf ?

There are alot of threads about the legality of whether the signage forms a contract.
QuackingPlums
I own the 999 year leasehold to both my apartment and my parking space.

I haven't got the lease in front of me but am pretty sure it doesn't give the management company to act on my behalf. What it does say in some form is that I agree to use the space only within the terms specified in the lease which may be subject to change. There's another clause that indicates that changes will be notified by writing and some time in advance etc but I'll have to dig out the lease again to get exact wording.

The A4 notices pinned up around the development are the only signs that mention clamping - none of the signs by Central Ticketing mention clamping, so maybe this is a ploy by the management agency to raise fears, but unfortunately it's targetted at the wrong people. Since only residents see the A4 notices, illegal parkers wouldn't know about the clamping at all.

I'll take a real photo of the actual sign later today and post it up, just in case there's a slight variation in our wording.

If the wording on the sign contradicts the lease that I signed, which one would take precedence?
g_attrill
edit: Others have made similar points whilst I was composing my reply. If I were you, I would write to the management company asking whether they intend to ticket genuine residents and visitors who mistakenly breach the "contract", or whether it is merely to scare off those who are causing problems.

This is a self-ticketing system, there is no clamping used at all. The management agents would have bought a pack and put up the signs themselves. Then the agent will put a ticket on the car and send the other part to Central Ticketing who will collect the money, or chase it up.

The agent will get £10 back per ticket paid (nice deal for them, charging people who park in your spaces!). I think from a contractual aspect it will depend on what you signed, check your deeds or contracts etc, it might give them the right to manage the parking, but it is a good question whether they can do this sort of thing.

Gareth
zamzara
Are they giving the permit to you free? If so you might as well just accept one and this won't really affect you anyway. As I said above, if that sign is the one in use they can't do anything to you as long as you hold a permit, even if you don't display it.
g_attrill
QUOTE (zamzara @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 13:22) *
Are they giving the permit to you free? If so you might as well just accept one and this won't really affect you anyway. As I said above, if that sign is the one in use they can't do anything to you as long as you hold a permit, even if you don't display it.


That's a good point - one of the problems pointed out on the pub thread was that you could consider yourself to be a customer of the pub but not at that immediate moment.
Teufel
the notice gives them no right to clamp
it would be a tort if they give no notice (arthur v anker)
also probably an offence under the private securities industry act 2001
which regulates and licences private clamping

the notice with regard to charging for parking may
be enforceable if placed so there is no doubt of a driver seeing them
and depending on the further circmstances - the extra charges referred to probably not (no special notice given - shoe lane parking case
and probably unenforcceable penalties - addis grampohone case)

this purported contract however is posibly in conflict with
your property rights if you have lease on the space
or your contract if a licence on the space and/or
the contact with the management company

i would suggets residents take up the issue with the managemnt
company and the parking company to clarify

for example if it is your space you presumably can let guests park there
DW190
QUOTE
for example if it is your space you presumably can let guests park there


and maybe they will give you a bounty if someone else parks there and pays a penalty.

I wonder if you could actually charge them for running a business on your parking space.
QuackingPlums
QUOTE (dominicp @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 13:55) *
for example if it is your space you presumably can let guests park there


In my opinion if I bought the space then I should be allowed to do what I like with it - fill it with alpacas if they'd stay still!

Certainly allow guests to park there if I so wish, though having to apply for a new permit each time one comes would be a bit of a bind (and I'm not sure if that invalidates the previous one for my own car).

They've also introduced a bizarre clause that says we can only park one car in each bay - not entirely sure what that's about, but again, if I can make two cars fit entirely within the confines of my bay (two Smart cars for instance) then I can't see why they'd have the authority to remove/clamp/ticket any of them! mad.gif

QUOTE (g_attrill @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 13:20) *
This is a self-ticketing system, there is no clamping used at all. The management agents would have bought a pack and put up the signs themselves. Then the agent will put a ticket on the car and send the other part to Central Ticketing who will collect the money, or chase it up.


That's interesting. The same company police the visitor bays around the apartment blocks (same notices, without the word "resident" across the middle) and cars have definitely been clamped.

A visitor of mine once got clamped despite having a valid permit displayed very prominently on the dash. To this day I've no idea how they justified it but they chose the wrong car to clamp that day, because my mate simply undid the ball joint, popped off the wheel and hub, threw the clamp in the boot, refitted the wheel and drove home... to France. He sent Central Ticketing a letter advising them that the clamp wasn't damaged and was "available for collection" but unsurprisingly they didn't follow it up.

Reading the back of the tickets, there's actually a section intended for the Police which reads "If presented with this ticket by a member of the public, please do not advise them against paying the fine", which to me sounds like they're well aware that these tickets aren't legal and are pleading with the Police not to cut off their line of income?

Thanks to everyone for all the replies and I hope to have a well-formed letter to my management company in the next few days! smile.gif
zamzara
QUOTE (QuackingPlums @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 18:56) *
Reading the back of the tickets, there's actually a section intended for the Police which reads "If presented with this ticket by a member of the public, please do not advise them against paying the fine", which to me sounds like they're well aware that these tickets aren't legal and are pleading with the Police not to cut off their line of income?


This has come up before, and it's still a bit mystifying why they write that. What you said is about the only explanation. but I can't see why they think it helps them: it's a pretty transparent trick.

Also, did you find out if the permits are free?
QuackingPlums
The permits are indeed free, however they keep a book of which car belongs to which space, and won't issue me another one unless I hand-in the old one (or at least claim it is lost).

I don't know if they cross-reference the book when they patrol the garage - even if they don't it's still quite a bit of hassle to obtain a pass for every visitor if the end result is that we still can't get rid of illegally parked cars.
chriss
QUOTE (QuackingPlums @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 18:56) *
QUOTE (dominicp @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 13:55) *

for example if it is your space you presumably can let guests park there


In my opinion if I bought the space then I should be allowed to do what I like with it - fill it with alpacas if they'd stay still!


Within the change of use guidelines of course.

QUOTE (QuackingPlums @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 18:56) *
Certainly allow guests to park there if I so wish, though having to apply for a new permit each time one comes would be a bit of a bind (and I'm not sure if that invalidates the previous one for my own car).


I'd describe this as the thin end of the wedge. It's your parking space, so not your responsibility to fill in paperwork to use it. I sometimes change cars five times a month (no, I'm not in the motor trade, I just seem to get a lot of courtesy cars thanks to the number of uninsured and unlicensed drivers on the roads) so could never cope with this.

QUOTE (QuackingPlums @ Wed, 9 Aug 2006 - 18:56) *
They've also introduced a bizarre clause that says we can only park one car in each bay - not entirely sure what that's about, but again, if I can make two cars fit entirely within the confines of my bay (two Smart cars for instance) then I can't see why they'd have the authority to remove/clamp/ticket any of them! mad.gif


This is commonplace. It's to allow them to increase their revenue. i.e. if you have a car and a motorbike you must spend another £15,000 a year to park it!
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