Saturday, 25 July 2015

Changegate Howarth still scamming tourists

The Prankster has received a report of yet another tourist being scammed at Changegate Howarth car park.

This is to bring to your notice a very unpleasant experience I had at change gate car park situated opposite the Edinburgh woolen mills store in Howarth, West yorkshire on 21 July 2015.
I am a visitor from Canada on trip to the Yorkshire Dales with my wife.
We entered the above mentioned car park to shop at the store across the street on 21 July 2015. I had to make a phone call so my wife went ahead and I stayed back in the car to make my phone call. I finished my call in 4 minutes and came out to buy a ticket from the pay machine. A man in a high visibility jacket was standing next to the car and told me that he is giving me a parking charge of 100 pounds as I did not have a pay and display ticket!I was shocked to hear that and explained the situation to him.He was not ready to listen and continued writing on his pad and taking a photo of my car!
He handed me the notice and said that if I paid the charge straight away to him it would be reduced from the 100 pounds to 60 pounds. I explained to him that this is unfair and outrageous but he kept on saying that I should pay the 60 pounds and then write to yourself for a refund.  Otherwise the car rental company (my car is a rental) will get the notice and I will have to pay the entire amount.I proceeded to buy a parking ticket from the machine and joined my wife in the store.Me and my wife were very upset by these events and decided to pay upfront as we were quite shaken by this episode.
In fact our nice vacation time in England has been left with an unpleasant memory.I think this is unfair and I would have not written to you if there was any legitimate ground for issuing me a charge.
I am afraid this kind of practice will leave a bad taste for England internationally especially tourists.I have scanned all the paperwork and attached it to this mail.I would appreciate if you can refund my money to the address below:

The situation is that this car park is unregulated and the operator is not a member of an Associated Trade Association (ATA) such as the British Parking Association. There is therefore no genuine appeals process, and the motorist could not for instance, appeal to POPLA on the ground that a grace period is required before issuing tickets.

More importantly, as the operator is not a member of an ATA, their only chance of getting payment is on the day. The operator cannot contact the DVLA and get the address of the vehicle keeper (the hire company) and there is therefore no keeper liability. Only the driver could be pursued, so the only opportunity, since their address in Canada was not known, would be to take money on the day.

Sadly, the operator knows that this car park is visited by many tourists who would have no knowledge of the legal situation and could be scammed into paying money on the day by the old 'pay now and get a discount' trick.

They would also not be aware that a grace period of 5-10 minutes is generally acceptable as the time allowed to purchase a ticket, and so a period of 4 minutes would be acceptable.

Happy Parking

The Parking Prankster


  1. Its shocking that scumbags like this are still operating.

    Does the customer want the king of the reclaim to try to get the money back? I'm up for having a go.

  2. Was he told to contact you Mr Prankster?

    1. I doubt any parking weasel would direct victims toward Pranky. Most likely the weasel told the victim he could 'appeal' to the weasel's own PO box address. Encourages payment, gives false hope and allows the weasel to have a good laugh at his victim's expense. Weasels.

  3. Reason enough to make it a legal requitement that ALL PPC's are members of an AOS.

  4. PPC's , can only obtain info from the DVLA, ONLY if they are a member of an approved ATA , even companies like ranger services , can only hand this info over IF the PPC is in a recognised ATA (not the credit service assoc = ANPR ltd) , this was deemed after the Proserve case.

  5. the owner is very switched on iirc. Many ccjs have been lost/not enforced because no one really beinf sure of the details of owner/operator/po box/company names etc....

  6. Edward Evans 2 Belle Isle Road, Haworth BD22 8QQ

  7. Friends of mine had the usual encounter with Mr Evans today ( 25th August 2015) and were 11 minutes late getting back to the car having been delayed by Mr Evans trying to sell them his book!!!. Guess what? They found one of his magic parking tickets on the windscreen wanting £60 up front. Fortunately they managed to leave without being fleeced but until I found this forum for them they were quite upset.. Haworth parkers still need to beware and avoid Chaingate CarPark..

  8. I got caught by the Silver Assassin today (emphasis on ASS). I bought a 2 hour parking ticket as I had not much change on me, with the intention that if I needed a further hour I'd get change from the shop and top it up. When I got there, conveniently while I was waiting for a ticket somebody offered me their ticket in a passing car (what timing, I say with raised eyebrows) which I duly took, put it in my car and returned to the tourist area. Upon my return there was a ticket on my windscreen saying I had violated the rules of non-transferable tickets and t was the usual £100/£75/£60 fine I had to pay. I didn't know about the regulations (the mobile internet connection there is appalling) so I thought best to pay up and sort it out afterwards. This was also due to the tall chap trying to be intimidating and arguing with me in the car park.

    Now far be it from me to suggest anything fishy was going on (oh no, would I do such a thing?) but the guy claimed to have seen me on CCTV when I accused them of watching me, he mentioned that my original ticket was up as well when I'd gone to get another one (it was, hence my return, but unless he had been watching before he wouldn't know that because the old ticket then went in my pocket...), then mysteriously somebody drives past me who's parked, paid, then decided to leave all within 7 minutes. Seems rather convenient but, as I say, far be it from me to suggest anything