Dad-of-five Lee Taylor, 38, from Normanby, North Yorkshire, paid £3.30 when parking his Citroen in a private car park while on a trip to a soft play centre in Redcar with his family
A dad-of-five has warned other drivers after being fined £273 – because he was 20p short when buying a parking ticket.
Lee Taylor, 38, drove his family to a soft play centre in Redby, North Yorkshire, and parked his Citroen in a private cark park run by Euro Car Parks.
He then slipped £3.30 into the machine – which he thought would cover a four-hour time slot.
Despite returning within the time limit, a £100 fine dropped through the letter box a few weeks later, Teesside Live reports.
Lee – who’s from Normanby and works as a leakage technician – realised he had paid the price for weekday parking instead of the slightly higher Saturday price of £3.50.
He and his wife Laura then got in touch with the parking firm to appeal and offered to give them 20p.
But he claims they received no contact back from the company until receiving a notice saying the fine had been increased because it hadn’t been paid.
The firm – who request appeals be made in writing – then sent another letter and racked the fine up to £273.
Lee told TeessideLive: “I realised I had made a genuine mistake and had paid the Monday to Friday price instead of the Saturday price of £3.50 which meant I was short by 20p.
“I received no change from the machine to indicate we had only paid for three hours.
“There was no way of contacting this company direct and it said to appeal we must do this in writing which we did explaining the mistake and offering to pay what we owed.
“We received no correspondence from Euro Car Parks until a few weeks later when they stated the fine had increased because we hadn’t paid in a certain time.
“Again we appealed in writing stating we hadn’t received anything back from our appeal.
“Another few weeks passed with nothing then suddenly we received a letter from a debt company telling us the debt had been passed onto them and we must now pay £273 off or face court proceedings.
“We contacted the debt company and they basically said there is no way of appealing this anymore and we either paid it or face court.
“Me and my wife have tried everything to resolve this and we have been totally ignored.
“I feel this is all a way of these companies exploiting and scaring people into paying these unreasonable fees.”
“This has caused us much distress and I would hate it to happen to lots of other people,” he added.
Lee says the family often visit Redcar and have used the same car park before.
Usually they pay for parking by phone but used cash on this occasion.