Woman fined after using pub car park to collect and drop off grandkids

A grandmother has been left fuming after she was accused of parking in a pub car park for eight hours.

In reality, Sue Bennett had only briefly stopped twice near The Tollemache Arms in Cheshire – to pick up and drop off her grandchildren.

The 74-year-old says on both occasions she was only there mere minutes.

However a £60 fine, stating that she had been there for eight hours, soon arrived through her letterbox.

Sue has appealed the charge but – until local news outlet CheshireLive contacted the parking agency – the bid had been rejected.

The pensioner had parked at The Tollemache Arms in Alpraham at 8.20am on August 15 to meet her daughter in order to look after her two grandchildren for the day.

Sue says she then left the car park, which has a maximum stay of two hours, about ten minutes later to return to her home in Tattenhall.

She then drove back to the pub shortly before 5pm to drop the boys off with their dad.

Her fine, from Smart Parking Ltd, had been accompanied by two camera images showing her arriving at 8.20am and then departing at 4.56pm.

Sue was even armed with proof as part of her case, such as fuel receipts from Sainsbury’s in Chester which showed her car had not been in the pub’s parking area for the eight hours time period.

She also had messages between her daughter which proved she was heading to the car park simply to drop off her grandkids.

Sue told ChesterLive: ‘Some people have said “why don’t you just pay it” – I don’t want to pay out money I don’t have.

‘I’m a 74-year-old grandmother, I’ve never had a conviction in my life. This is now nothing to do with the fine but to uphold the principle of honesty.’

She added: ‘This is now nothing to do with the fine but to uphold the principle of honesty. Each rejection was based on the fact their camera did not show me leaving in the morning, nor arriving in the afternoon.’

After approaching Smart Parking about the fine, the company confirmed that after a ‘detailed investigation of all available information’, Sue’s fine was to be cancelled.

A Smart Parking spokesperson said: ‘Smart Parking have been employed to manage the car park at the Tollemache Arms in order to address significant parking abuse and to ensure genuine customers of the premises can always find somewhere to park.

‘In regard to the site itself, nefarious activity by some individuals have seen the cameras tampered with, balloons put in place to cover the cameras and vehicles situated so that incorrect images are taken.’

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