ONCE again Northumberland County Council sets the standard for outrageous overcharging of its customers.
I was given a £30 parking ticket at Low Newton car park for failure to display. I had the correct money but 5p short in silver and the antiquated machines in Northumberland do not allow you to pay for the time you use (£2 all day), so having driven from Thropton I decided to go for a walk any way.
I returned to the car park an hour later to find a luminous green-jacketed executive parking enforcement officer issuing my ticket. I proceeded to show him I had the money to pay but the machine wouldn’t accept the denomination and I could pay him, he refused as a luminous green jacketed executive parking enforcement officer does not have the power (or training) to be able to answer questions from the general public. I also asked him about the logic of issuing a parking ticket to the only car in the car park in the middle of winter.
I can only assume that an alien mothership had landed behind me by the look on his face. Mumbling something containing the sound ‘cooncil’ at me, he then proceeded to his car which contained another luminous green jacketed executive parking enforcement officer, two of them, what a bargain Northumberland residents are getting.
I have used the car park at Newton for years and as I have had to pay a £2 daily charge for less than a day’s use, Northumberland council owes me a few hundred pounds of which I am sure they would be only to happy to discuss.
I don’t have a problem with parking enforcement in busy times, but in under-used sites in winter time, rural Northumberland needs to attract visitors and help businesses, not apply blanket punitive charges.