Anger over ‘unfair’ ASDA parking fine

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A motorist has accused ASDA of misleading users of its car park over time restrictions.

Kevin Smyth was shocked to receive a £70 fine after leaving his car at the Biggleswade supermarket for the evening – including for half an hour after the store had closed.

Signs in the car park inform drivers that they can only park for two hours at a time – but Kevin says there is no suggestion that the rules apply on a 24-hour basis.

He had returned to his grey Mazda 6 Sport at 10.35pm – more than 30 minutes after the store had closed, having arrived two hours previously.

He said: “It is well known that you can only park for two hours at a time when the store is open.

“But there is no indication that the restrictions apply outside of the trading hours and my car was only there for around 90 minutes while ASDA was still open.

“I couldn’t believe it when the fine arrived in the post 12 days later – leaving me just two days to pay it within the specified 14-day period.”

Kevin, who lives in Gamlingay, wrote to the store manager and was disappointed when he did not receive a response.

He added: “There was no reply – they don’t seem to be interested in this kind of thing.”

Antony Wilson, ASDA’s strategic development manager responsible for car parks said: “Being able to park quickly and safely is our customers’ top priority.

“Most of our stores don’t have any parking restrictions at all, but a small number – usually those in town centres like Biggleswade – do, so people who have no intention of shopping at our store don’t take valuable spaces away from our customers.”

Mr Wilson said strict conditions placed on the store made 24-hour restrictions necessary.

He added: “The store is located close to a residential area and one of the conditions placed on our trading hours is that the car park is closed when the store closes to prevent antisocial behaviour.

“As such, the parking restrictions operate 24/7 and our signs make this clear.

“We are happy to review parking charges on a case by case basis, where a customer has a genuine reason to be at the store.”