How we helped to overturn a parking ticket

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A disabled man from West Ashby, near Horncastle, is celebrating after Lincolnshire County Council cancelled a parking ticket - with the help of the News’ sister title the Louth Leader.

Darren Hancock parked in the bay opposite Wilkinsons store in Eastgate, Louth on July 11.

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He returned to his vehicle after 20 minutes and was shocked to receive a ticket.

Mr Hancock says he was confused because a sign explaining the regulations for the parking bay appeared to have been damaged and was partially hidden behind a post.

He added white makings in the bay were unreadable.

He saw the County Council’s traffic enforcement officer and asked why he had issued a ticket.

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Mr Hancock explained to the officer that he was confused by the sign - and the markings - but the officer told him he had parked in a loading bay.

Mr Hancock wrote to the county council outlining the situation but they rejected his appeal.

In their reply, the council enclosed a photo of the sign.

Mr Hancock then contacted the Leader, pointing out the council’s photo was taken from the side view - and not the from angle he saw it (head on). He supplied the Leader with the head-on photo.

We emailed the photo to the council and also spoke to them, explaining the situation.

As a result, the County Council agreed to cancel the ticket.

Mr Hancock said: “I parked up to pop into a nearby shop. I couldn’t believe it when I came back and saw a parking ticket on my windscreen.

“I am really careful where I park and have never had a ticket before.”

He explained when he looked at the sign, he could only seen an icon of a man loading a vehicle and a letter ‘P’ stating 30 minutes.

Mr Hancock added: “Someone must have hit that sign at some point as it was all bent.

“All I saw was the two icons so I genuinely thought it was a space open for both loading and parking for up to 30 minutes free.”

A County Council spokesperson said: “We have reviewed the gentleman’s case again and the parking ticket will be cancelled.

“We will be speaking to the contractor who carries out parking enforcement on our behalf and making it clear the appeal should have been granted in the first instance.”

The spokesman accepted the handling of Mr Hancock’s case did not meet the County Council’s standards.

The council said they were ‘grateful’ we had brought the matter to their attention.