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£30 fine for ONE minute’s car parking

PUBLISHED: 17:17 06 August 2008 | UPDATED: 15:08 25 August 2010

Bexley
04-08-08
Bellegrove Rd, Welling
Van Le got parking ticket after one minute 
Van with the ticket

Bexley 04-08-08 Bellegrove Rd, Welling Van Le got parking ticket after one minute Van with the ticket

A FURIOUS driver fined £30 for leaving his car for ONE minute as he went to buy a parking permit said he would rather go to court than pay his penalty.

A FURIOUS driver fined £30 for leaving his car for ONE minute as he went to buy a parking permit said he would rather go to court than pay his penalty.

Van Chuyen Le, 28, of Kingsdale Road, Plumstead, had left his Mercedes in Bellegrove Road, Welling, to get change for a parking permit on Monday, July 21.

Despite buying a £1 ticket at 2pm, a pair of zealous parking attendants slapped a fine on his windscreen at 1.59pm.

The bus driver said: "I was going to visit my wife at work in the hair salon with my five-year-old son.

"The machine I went to would not accept my note, so I had to go and get change.

"I couldn't believe it when I came back. I asked them to cancel it but they ignored me."

Last Friday Bexley council decided Mr Le must pay the full fine or make a formal complaint.

Failing that, he can seek an ombudsman's ruling.

Mr Le added: "It is ridiculous. I feel it is very unfair to me."

Bexley council's policy is that drivers cannot leave the vicinity of their car, even to get change to pay for a ticket.

The strict ban on any 'grace' period meant the council refused Mr Le's informal challenge whilst knowing his good intentions.

Bexley council issued almost 64,000 parking tickets last year but cancelled over one in three.

A council spokesperson said: "This could be for a number of reasons including - but not exclusive to - successfully contested penalty charge notifications.

"However, once cancelled there is no means of identifying whether or not cancellation was due to a successful challenge or not."

jules.cooper@archant.co.uk

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