No more parking fines outside Dereham’s One Stop
- Credit: IAN BURT
Drivers can park outside the One Stop shop in Dereham without fear of getting a ticket and a big fine after the camera was turned off and signs taken down yesterday.
A bitter feud between the store, owned by Tesco, and the car park landowner has seen more than 1,000 people receive tickets over three months.
This newspaper reported how hundreds of readers were unaware they were parking in a restricted area and how they were angry as £60 and £100 fines dropped on their doormats.
But from Tuesday at 6pm the camera monitoring the eight spaces stopped catching customers and yesterday morning the signs were taken down as a commercial agreement was reached.
Anyone who has received a ticket for parking at the site before Tuesday evening will still have to pay it.
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The landowner, Zevy Shainfeld, director of Zas Investment, said he was 'delighted' that an agreement has been reached to allow parking outside the shops.
Mr Shainfeld took on Car Park Solutions (CPS) to monitor unauthorised cars parking in the spaces, often customers from the Chinese take-away Sunflower Lounge and One Stop.
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Clients of the funeral directors, Gordon Barber's, were not hit with fines as Mr Shainfeld owns that property.
This newspaper understands that One Stop will pay Mr Shainfeld £10,000 a year for their customers' use of the spaces and have paid an additional premium to take the camera down on Friday.
A One Stop spokesman said: 'We are delighted that our customers can now park outside the One Stop store free of charge.
'We want shopping in our store to be easy and convenient for all our customers and we have worked hard to resolve the parking issue.'
A total amount of £17,000 has been made from the ticketing since the end of January this year, £13,000 of that going to Car Park Solutions.
Andre Smith, the regional development manager for CPS, said anyone who parked outside the store up until 6pm on Tuesday will be issued with a ticket and expected to pay it.
But parking after that time was now free.
He said that only 328 tickets, out of the 1,014 issued, have been paid and warned that court action is being taken against those who have failed to settle.
Some people have had letters from Roxburghe, a debt collecting company, as well as Graham White Solicitors.
These people say they received no notification of a fine from CPS, but just letters from the debt collectors and lawyers.
Mr Smith said this would be illegal and denied that CPS have failed to send out letters.
He said: 'It would breach so many codes and would be so much hassle, we couldn't consider humouring the idea.'
The saga has been rumbling on since July last year when parking was monitored by Norfolk Parking Enforcement.
The managing director, Jonathan Lecaille, said they decided to pull out of the arrangement in August for moral and ethical reasons.