Parking firm responds after complaints over tickets for store’s car park in Wellingborough

Matalan in Wellingborough
Matalan in Wellingborough

A parking firm has responded after several people complained about getting tickets which they say were issued incorrectly while parking at a town centre store.

Several people contacted the Northants Telegraph after getting a ticket which they feel had been issued incorrectly for parking at the Matalan car park in Wellingborough.

The complaints were over customers getting a ticket despite leaving before the ticket expired and tickets issued despite drivers displaying their Blue Badges.

One lady left a message about the Wellingborough store on the Matalan Facebook page and said: “When you complain in the store, they don’t want to know, even though you have the relevant proof that you have parked legally, displayed the ticket and left before the ticket expired (shown on camera).”

She added that she had left all the papers in-store with the manager and was hoping for a positive outcome.

When the Northants Telegraph contacted Matalan about this incident, a spokesman for Smart Parking which operates the ticketing system at the car park, said: “There are four machines at Matalan Wellingborough car park.

“On the date in question one of the four machines had been vandalised which meant it wasn’t fully operational.

“Because of this, as an act of goodwill we wrote to her cancelling her charge.”

A number of people also contacted the newspaper about tickets being issued even when they had displayed a Blue Badge in their vehicle.

One person got in touch to say their mum’s carer had taken her in and parked in the disabled space with the Blue Badge showing, but she received a fine.

They said the ticket machine was not working on the day and were told they needed to register with the shop.

Another woman said she displayed her Blue Badge and was issued with a parking ticket, although she appealed and has since got her money back.

She said: “What shocked me was I opened the letter, which I was not expecting, and there was a picture of my car and I felt like a criminal.

“I did find it upsetting.

“I just can’t bear to go back so I won’t go back.”

In response, the spokesman for Smart Parking said: “At the car park we use a state-of-the-art ANPR parking system which captures cars entering and leaving and tells us whether people have parked for the correct amount of time.

“Because of this we ask all Blue Badge holders to go into the store and register their details.

“They only need to do this once and then they will able to park for free whenever they shop in Matalan.

“There are over 42 signs across the car park which clearly outline these terms and conditions.

“Smart Parking are members of the British Parking Association, and we operate a fully audited appeals process.

“We would encourage any motorists who feel there are mitigating circumstances in their case to contact Smart Parking at appealsmatalan@smartparking.com.”