A ‘ruthless’ car park company is damaging the business of a fish and chip shop in Rye according to its owner with a customer calling for changes.
Ian Elliot was given an £80 fine for waiting 20 minutes in Wish Street Car Park before one of Kettle O’Fish’s free spaces became available.
The Hastings man believes you should be given time to wait if you are not using the car park, ran by Euro Car Parks (ECP).
When he spoke to the chippy staff, they said dozens of people complain about it and it is ‘killing’ the business, which he thinks is wrong.
“I think it’s disgusting as I wasn’t parked, I think it’s really harsh,” he said.
“I went in to the shop and he said it’s killing his business as people are too afraid to get fish and chips from him because of the parking fines.”
Mr Elliot went into the car park at 6.24pm, waited for 19 minutes before leaving and going into one of the four free spaces adjacent to the chip shop, which are inaccessible without going through the car park.
A few days later a penalty charge notice came through the door saying he needed to pay £80 for not buying a 30p ticket, which could be half if paid within 14 days.
When he complained to ECP, he said they did not care and were really unreasonable.
Chippy owner George Angele said the signs clearly state it is camera-operated and you need to buy a ticket regardless of whether you are parking or waiting.
But he said ECP is affecting his business and is considering getting leaflets made telling people to buy a ticket if they go into the car park.
“Although I have all the sympathy in the world for him if you don’t pay the 30p then you’ll be fined,” he said.
“It’s affecting my business greatly because so many people have got tickets but in fairness even before ECP bought it you had to buy a ticket. People don’t realise this.
“They think if they are only there for 20 minutes then they can get away with it but they can’t. I’m only a small fish in the sea, I can’t do anything about it other than warn people.”
Mr Angele said he paid ‘an absolute fortune’ for the four free spaces but wished ECP changed their system.
“ECP unfortunately are quite ruthless. I wish they had a system in place whcih was a bit more lenient for customers. I have done everything within my power to help my customers but some don’t read the signs,” he said.
ECP has been contacted for comment.
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