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Sidcup gym user hits out at leisure centre over new parking cameras that led to £60 fines

15:03 16 February 2017

Sidcup Leisure Centre

Sidcup Leisure Centre

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She claims gym users were not notified that the change was set to take place

A gym user has hit out at a Sidcup leisure centre after being hit by two fines following a parking clampdown.

Elizabeth Stokes, who lives in Lewisham but works in Sidcup, regularly works out at Sidcup Leisure Centre on Hurst Road.

But she has criticised the centre after receiving a £60 parking fine over the Christmas period, claiming she had not been notified of the changes.

Ms Stokes told the Bexley Times: “I have been going there for a couple of years and never noticed it had changed - then I got two fines through the post.

“I asked to see the manager, and another three people there said they had all got fines.”

The gym has introduced an automated system, ParkingEye, which uses a camera to record the exact times at which cars enter and leave.

“If you are five or ten minutes late you will end up getting a fine, so you have to pay for two hours,” she added.

Ms Stokes’ fines were eventually revoked over a technical detail, but she pointed out many others will have been penalised.

She added: “They have not emailed everyone. They put it on Facebook – but not everyone has Facebook.”

Nicholas Fekete, of Boxwood Leisure, which runs the leisure centre, said: “The area has always been controlled parking, and pay and display.

“The only thing that has changed is we are using a system for plate recognition – otherwise people will take a chance to park at the centre when they are not using it.

“We installed 30 signs to inform people three months before the change, and they are still there.”

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