Thursday, 22 January 2015

Is Chris Dawson's The Range operating a criminally based parking operation in Barrow with ParkingEye's help?

Chris Dawson owns CDS Superstores, who run the successful 'The Range' series of stores. One of these is in Barrow-in-Furness, and has a respectably sized car park adjacent, which is run on behalf of The Range by ParkingEye. Unfortunately no one bothered to apply for advertisement consent, under the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) (England) Regulations 2007 (as amended), for their signage in the car park. Regulation 30 indicates that this is a criminal offence.

The Local Planning Authority wrote to the Land owner back in March 2014 and nothing happened. The actual occupier is CDS (Superstores International) Limited trading as The Range. The planners then wrote to ParkingEye in August asking for a formal application for consent. Parking Eye showed their contempt for the law by just ignoring the request. Finally they wrote again in November 2014 spelling out their criminal conduct in no uncertain terms and threatening a prosecution.
Please be aware that anyone who displays an advertisement or knowingly permits someone else to do so, without the consent required, is acting illegally. It is then immediately open to the planning authority to bring prosecution in the Magistrates’ Court for an offence under section 224 of the Town and County Planning Act 1990.
It is trite law that if a crime has to be committed to create a contract then that contract is illegal and unenforceable. To create the contract they had to have the signage. Thus all parking contracts that ParkingEye have alleged they have had over the past two years have been unenforceable.

Under the contract between ParkingEye and The Range clause 3.5 indicates that it was the responsibility of The Range to obtain the necessary consent. Regardless, a prudent business should have checked that the consents were in place before they started to operate.

ParkingEye/The Range have known, from the planners, about this issue for 10 months during which it has continued to issue parking charge notices to motorists with whom it has entered into illegal contracts. There may be an issue here around fraud.

ParkingEye's standard contract (clause 3.11) shows they collect charges for breach of contract on behalf of the landowner. If this is in force with The Range then Chris Dawson's store will have trousered a lot of cash from parking charges illegally from his own customers in the last few years. The ParkingEye v Somerfield case established that each parking space is worth 0.4 parking charges per week. At £100 a charge, that is £4,000 a week per 100 spaces, and £208,000 a year.

The Prankster suggests that any motorist who paid a parking charge for The Range in Barrow in Furness applies to both ParkingEye and The Range to get their money back. This may also apply to motorists who have had court judgments against them. In this case the Tort of Deceit may apply which could mean the motorist can bring a fresh case. Motorists interested in this should take legal advice first.

Happy Parking

The Parking Prankster 


  1. wow , very interesting, especially as im currently going to court with Peye and the Range. Anyone know how I could find out if the Range I'm currently in dispute with have the relevant consent?

    1. They don't. email me at for the stuff you will need for your defence

    2. iv just found all planning applications for the range , over the last 6 years and there is not one that lists erecting additional signage for Parkingeye.
      What should i do ??!!

  2. You get the facts added to your defence, as you only just became aware and as long as you send a copy to PE you should be cover. Email pranky at his email addy in his last reply to your first message.

  3. Presumably all signs displaying the parking terms and conditions are required to have planning permission ? I am dealing with a charge from G24 who have recently taken over the management of a site (from ANPR Ltd !). Signs are displayed but a search of the planning applications returns no recent application for the site in question.

  4. I've emailed the local planning officer to enquire why there is no record of an advertisement application from either The Range or ParkingEye .

  5. Is this the same for Lidl and Athena parking, I have tried to check whether their have been any planning submissions by either locally and can find no records??

  6. Is this the same for Lidl and Athena parking, I have tried to check whether their have been any planning submissions by either locally and can find no records??

  7. Local rag picks up the story, better late than never:

  8. Local rag picks up the story, better late than never:

  9. See my post #8