(Image: ITV News / Getty)

A frustrated motorist is lashing out at a parking company for initiating legal proceedings over a simple error. Clare Marsden alleges that she has faced threats from bailiffs and a hefty £277 fine after mistakenly entering the wrong registration number while parking.

Ms. Marsden asserts that she paid the correct parking fees when she parked at the Smyth Street car park in Wakefield city center. However, an issue arose when the parking company requested her to provide a number plate, and she inadvertently provided the details of her vehicle, which was undergoing repairs, instead of the courtesy car she was driving at the time.

As a consequence of this mistake, Clare received a £75 fine. Promptly reaching out to Excel Parking Services to rectify the situation, she claims the company dismissed her, despite presenting evidence of her payment. In an interview with ITV News, she expressed regret for the error and willingness to pay half of the fine, but the company rejected her offer.

Refusing to attend a court hearing in Northampton, Clare later discovered that her fine had ballooned by over £200. Faced with the looming threat of bailiffs, she emphasized the distress of potentially having possessions seized due to a parking violation she had already paid for.

Clare, who has been widowed and is compelled to sell her home due to a quadrupled mortgage cost, offered to settle the matter by paying half the initial amount. Consumer watchdog Which? highlights that parking fines are often left uncontested by motorists.

Responding to the situation, Excel’s sister company, Vehicle Control Services, stated that Clare’s settlement offer was declined because it was “significantly lower than the amount owed.” The company maintains that the Parking Charge Notice (PCN) was issued correctly, asserting that Clare failed to comply with the terms and conditions by entering a different vehicle registration number. They argue that she had the option to appeal within 21 days but only engaged when the matter progressed to debt recovery.

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