St Albans man beats parking fine at third attempt

Alan Dulin with a penalty charge notice which he successfully appealed against after his parking tic

Alan Dulin with a penalty charge notice which he successfully appealed against after his parking ticket fell from his window to the floor of his car - Credit: Archant

A feisty St Albans senior has taken on a council which threatened to call in the bailiffs over a car parking fine, and won.

It was a case of third time lucky for Alan Dulin, of Bricket Wood, who refused to back down when Hertsmere borough council erroneously issued him with a £50 fine over five months ago while parked at Newberries car park.

He appealed against the fine, and sent the council the ticket to prove he had paid for parking.

Alan explained to the authority that the ticket must have been blown onto the floor of his car when he shut the door.

However the council rejected his appeal as the parking warden could not see the ticket.

So he appealed again, and was frustrated at being turned down a second time.

He said: “When they sent the letter, there was a threat to send in the bailiffs if I didn’t pay the fine, to recover the value of the penalty.

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“But fines should be for people who don’t pay or exceed the time limit. I did neither.”

Alan said: “I was so angry that I wrote to [St Albans MP] Anne Main. I was annoyed they were trying to make money out of someone who had already paid the fee.”

She wrote several letters to the council in support of his appeal, also to no avail.

He then appealed a third time, via the Traffic Penalty Tribunal.

But the council sent him a letter on February 13, saying it would not contest the appeal as the warden could not supply evidence of his alleged wrongdoing.

An adjudication letter from the tribunal said that as the council was not contesting the appeal, he had won.

Alan said: “Doing three appeals was worth it because I’m a stickler for standards and it was about the principle. I was aggrieved that the council was completely over the top. They can’t run roughshod over you.

“And at the end of the day, they didn’t have the guts to face me. They should treat customers with respect, particularly if you are an older citizen.”

Anne Main said: “I felt Mr Dulin had a reasonable case. If you feel you are right, these things are always worth pursuing. I’m glad he didn’t give up.”