Excel Parking - Sheffield couple in dispute over 'keying error' at Berkeley Centre on Ecclesall Road
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Nick Smillie and wife Aurora Munoz Freire paid for two hours at Berkeley Centre on Ecclesall Road and did not overstay. But Excel Parking says they failed to input their registration number accurately, which is a breach of the terms and conditions. The firm rejected their appeal and the case has been referred to Sheffield County Court.
Nick, of Mylor Road, High Storrs, said the incident happened a year ago. But despite the stress, they wanted their day in court.
He added: “The amount of threatening correspondence has been quite shocking - a stressful and unpleasant experience. We've defended ourselves vigorously and have refused to cave in and pay them, but are still awaiting a conclusion.”
He said their ordeal started when he input the first two digits of his number plate before the machine became ‘unresponsive’. But, since he’d paid, he pressed the green button and got a ticket. They left before it expired.
He added: “In spite of all that, they rejected our appeal and have taken this all the way to court. They've demanded £250, including 'legal costs', and we're now waiting to hear from a judge, who will be considering it without a hearing. They're taking us to court purely based on the 'keying error' being a contravention of their Ts & Cs.”
Excel Parking is under investigation after a faulty machine at Broomhill rooftop parking incorrectly issued £100 demands.
An Excel Parking Services spokesperson insisted the machine at Berkeley Centre was working properly and Mr Smillie’s claim was “not supported by the many other valid purchases made throughout the day.” And only entering two characters was not a ‘minor’ error.
They added: “Allowances are routinely made for minor keying errors but only two characters being entered could not be considered as minor. Had Mrs Munoz Freire called our helpline at the time, we would have been able to advise her how to avoid liability for a Parking Charge.
“Mrs Munoz Freire's appeal was rejected for these reasons. In the rejection she was offered the opportunity to appeal to the Independent Appeals Service if she disagreed with our decision but has chosen not to do so.”