A COUPLE challenging fees demanded by a parking firm which claimed it had not received their letters have won a court case.
Simon and Natalie Adams, from Stretton, said they were 'ecstatic' after a judge at Derby County Court said she believed they had written the letters and ruled they did not need to pay a penny of the £215 requested by ParkingEye.
"We've just had 18 months of torture because of threats of county court judgements and taking us to court and we're just so relieved it's all over," said Mrs Adams, 31.
Their parking fee saga began when Mr Adams, 38, visited Family Bargains, off Horninglow Road, in Burton on December 20, 2012, and outstayed the allowed parking time by 15 minutes.
ParkingEye, which manage car parking at the site, sent Mr Adams a letter – dated December 29 – with photographs of his car arriving at 1.01pm and leaving at 4.16pm.
A notice at the site stated '3 hour max stay - customer only car park'.
The letter asked him to pay £60 within two weeks or £100 within a month and said he could appeal by sending store receipts. Mrs Adams told the court that in January 2013 they sent a letter to appeal the £100 charge, including the receipt of the money spent by Mr Adams in Family Bargains. Then again in February 2013, after the firm said it had not received the first letter.
There was further correspondence between them in July last year by phone and email, with ParkingEye saying it had not received any proof of Mr Adams using the store. The couple told the court they then sent another letter attaching the bank statement.
They thought that was the end of it, but in November last year, Mr Adams received a court letter demanding the sum of £165.
He emailed ParkingEye and received a reply, which said the firm had never received any of his letters and a County Court Claim had been lodged against him for a £165 parking penalty plus £50 costs for it having to go to court.
At the end of the hearing District Judge Elizabeth Williscroft said: "There's a dispute between the parties whether the defendant and his wife did provide proof of purchase over some period of time.
She said ParkingEye said it did not receive correspondence but ruled, on the balance of probability, that it did.