Success of parking fine appeals dependent on council, figures show

Data collated via a Freedom of Information (FoI) request submitted by the Press Association has indicated that the chances of successfully challenging parking fines varies widely depending on where drivers get a ticket.

The FoI yielded responses from 98 English local authorities about initial challenges to on-street parking fines received from drivers between January and October 2016. The information highlighted some English councils approve only one in 10 appeals against on-street fines, while others accept nearly every one.

For example, the Runnymede Council in Surrey accepted just nine per cent of appeals while Basingstoke approved 95 per cent.

Staffordshire County Council also accepted challenges at a rate of about one in 10 (10.4 per cent), contrasting significantly with Deane which accepted 540 challenges out of 566 - a rate of more than 95 per cent.

A spokeswoman for Runnymede Council, which accepted the fewest challenges commented: “We use our own staff to carry out enforcement, who are experienced and well trained in the role and therefore only issue notices where necessary.

Simon Bound , councillor for Basingstoke and Deane, maintained it took a ‘pragmatic’ approach to issuing fines which lead to a low number of formal appeals.

Bound said: ”Is the objective to fight to make sure the fine is paid, or is it about engaging with the resident and having the conversation about educating them to park better? They won't get an appeal approved if they do the same thing at another point in time."

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