Driver charged £2,000 after being fined 20 times in one month at same car park
PUBLISHED: 12:55 23 August 2019 | UPDATED: 16:08 23 August 2019
A driver fined 20 times in one month at the same car park has hit out at the site's owners.
Stuart Rogers, 50, spent a month living above a car park in Oulton Broad in 2018 which has faced criticism over unfair charges and confusing terms.
Over the last year, drivers have reported being unsure whether the car park was free, after business owners said there was a period where people did not need to pay-and-display.
While Mr Rogers was living above the car park, he says he had permission to park behind it.
He said: "I didn't even use the car park, but every time I passed through the front a picture was taken. That for them was photographic evidence.
"From April to May that added up to £2,000. I was in and out every day, working. I was told it was free and never parked around the front, but you have to go past the cameras. It's a trap basically."
The car park, owned by SLS properties and managed by National Parking Enforcement (NPE), has previously been accused of driving away customers from businesses, as drivers claimed they had been charged up to £100 for simply driving through the car park without parking.
Mr Rogers said: "I appealed on every letter but they weren't having it. They're just there to catch people and make money.
"Even when they took the machine out, and it was free for a time, the camera was still in action."
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Mr Rogers has leukaemia, and during the month in question had £20,000 of unrelated debt.
He said: "I told them about my debt and said I'm suffering from leukaemia. I thought that might soften it a bit but it didn't. What can you say about people like that?"
An East Suffolk Council investigation is under way over whether the site was built with proper planning permission.
Mr Rogers said: "I hope the council gets somewhere with it, because this has got to be put to an end."
Last week Jonathan Lecaille, National Parking Enforcement managing director, said: "We do not own the car park and simply manage it on the owner's behalf."
A spokesperson from SLS properties, which owns the site, said the car park had been pay-and-display for several years, and that they had improved the site.
"We don't benefit from people being fined or from hurting local business," they said.
"If people have complaints there is a procedural process with NPE, but any allegations of people being fined without parking are not true."