A MOTORIST has vowed to fight a private parking firm to the bitter end.
Katherine Lunn, 33, of Golcar, received a £75 ticket for parking at the Great Northern Retail Park in Huddersfield on July 26.
Parking company UKCPS said she had exceeded the maximum stay of two hours, starting at 11.25am.
But Miss Lunn, a podiatrist, says she was parked for just 55 minutes, between 12.40pm and 1.35pm.
She says she is prepared to take the matter to court, even if that means having to pay another £3 for each day she refuses to pay.
Private parking firms are not regulated by law and have no obligation to provide photographic evidence of parking.
Paul Watters, the Automobile Association’s head of public affairs, says: “When a motorist has a dispute with a private parking company it’s a civil matter and it can be very dodgy.
“Private parking is a burgeoning industry. It’s just about everywhere and there’s nothing governing what they’re up to. It’s unacceptable and the Government are keeping out of it.
“To protect yourself take photos and gather evidence of the incident and protest immediately to the company that issued the ticket and to the landowner.
“We have known landowners to sack dodgy operators after pressure from motorists.”
Miss Lunn said: “I’ve asked to see the photo and they’ve said ‘no’. They won’t tell me why.
“I don’t really want to go there again. It seems like anyone could park there and receive a ticket because they’re not prepared to supply the evidence.
“It’s outrageous. I was at home at the time I was supposed to have been there.
“I’ve complained to the landowner and I will take it all the way.
“It’s disgusting. There will be people who can’t be bothered to fight or are too frightened.”
UKCPS said the company patrols the car park when sporting events are on at the Galpharm to prevent spectators taking shoppers’ spaces.
The company added that it was in talks with the landowner to install cameras to monitor parking.
Jim Whitehead, UKCPS operations manager, said: “We’ll have a look at the photos and double-check. There are no reason why she can’t see the photos.
“We’re there to do a job. It’s not a very pleasant job but we’re not there to punish people who shouldn’t be punished.
“If Miss Lunn wants to get in touch I’ll look into it.”