Parking enforcement FAQs

Stage 1 - informal challenge

On receipt of a written challenge the case is put on hold while we examine the challenge information provided. We examine every case individually, and if we accept your reasons we'll cancel the PCN and you won't have to pay anything. A challenge received within the discount period, ie 14 days of the date of issue, will be offered extended discount in the event that the challenge is rejected.

Stage 2 - formal representation

If your informal challenge is rejected you'll receive a 'notice of rejection of challenge' letter. You may decide that you disagree with this decision. If so, a further formal representation can be made to the Parking Team, but only when the registered keeper of the vehicle receives a Notice to Owner (NTO). This legal document will be sent out 28 days after either the penalty charge notice was issued or the date of the notice of rejection of challenge letter. The full penalty will be payable at this stage. A Notice to Owner is sent at this time irrespective of whether an informal challenge was initially made, and only if the PCN remains outstanding. The Notice to Owner is served on the registered keeper of the vehicle, irrespective of who may have been driving on the date of the contravention.

An Appeals Officer not involved in the earlier informal challenge stage will investigate the formal representation, and either a notice of acceptance or notice of rejection will be sent in response.

Stage 3 - appeal

If a formal representation is rejected you'll receive a notice of rejection of representation, which will explain the reasons for upholding the PCN. This document will also explain that a subsequent appeal may be submitted to the Traffic Penalty Tribunal for consideration by an independent adjudicator. The appellant may choose to have their appeal dealt with either by post, telephone or at a personal hearing. This part of the procedure will be fully explained in the notice of rejection of representation.

The adjudicator's ruling is final, and a motorist could face having to pay costs if their appeal was felt to be unreasonable. Costs may also be awarded against us if we're considered to have acted similarly.

Stage 1: Notice to Owner is issued

Payment of the penalty charge notice is the liability of the registered keeper of the vehicle. They'll receive a Notice to Owner if the charge remains unpaid after 28 days, and be given the option to pay the full amount or make a representation.

Stage 2: charge certificate

If the Notice to Owner isn't actioned by the registered keeper, a charge certificate will be issued after the statutory 28 days have elapsed (56 days from the initial penalty issue date). The original penalty charge payable at this stage will have been further increased by 50%.

Stage 3: registered debt and recovery by Enforcement Agents

If the increased amount remains unpaid after a further 14 days, the amount will be registered with the Traffic Enforcement Centre at Northampton County Court as a debt. Reaching this stage will incur an additional charge of £8. Once the debt is registered, a further 21 days will be allowed for payment. A warrant of execution will be issued and discharged by certified Enforcement Agents, who will take recovery action if the debt isn't paid within the statutory time limit.

The original penalty charge on the date of issue will have been £50 or £70 depending on whether or not the contravention is levied at the lower or higher level of penalty; by this time it will have increased to £75 and £105 respectively.

Increases to the payment are part of the cases progression and statutory charges through Traffic Penalty Tribunal and Traffic Enforcement Centre.

Even if a penalty charge notice is subject to a warrant of execution, we'll only ever receive the £83 or £113 registered as a debt at the county court. Any Enforcement Agent costs attached to the amount in respect of recovering the debt is kept by the Council.

If you had a medical emergency and this resulted in a penalty charge notice being issued you can appeal and include a letter from the hospital or doctor as proof.

The Neighbourhood Enforcement Officer may not be aware of your vehicle break down. Appeal your penalty charge notice and include evidence such as a garage receipt for the work carried out.

The registered keeper of the vehicle is liable for paying the penalty charge notice (PCN).

A Neighbourhood Enforcement Agent will observe a vehicle for a given time (this observation time is printed on the PCN) to establish whether it is being used for loading/unloading purposes. If no activity is seen around the vehicle during the observation period then a PCN will be issued. If you feel the NEO issued the PCN wrongly, you may appeal and supply evidence of a delivery note as proof of loading/unloading was taking place.

Loading/unloading should be a continuous activity involving heavy goods.

Pavement parking can be anti-social and can cause significant disruption to pedestrians including people with small children, who use mobility aids and wheelchairs, are blind or partially sighted or use assistance dogs.

You usually can park near to most residential properties on the road although not necessarily outside without causing an obstruction.

Most schools have a transport plan that identifies areas where parking is acceptable without the need to park on the pavement. For example, local shops may volunteer their car park at school pick up times. These may be away from the school but no more than a short walk.

There is extensive free car parking in most local centres. Obstructing pavements in shopping areas is not justifiable even if it is just for a few minutes.

Parking a vehicle on the footway where no other restrictions are in place is not currently an offence that can be enforced under CPE.

However, there are circumstances where we may be able to take action such as:

  • where there are existing parking restrictions that are in force at the time on the adjacent carriageway, such as (but not limited to) waiting restrictions or clearway markings
  • where a pavement parking ban is in place with the associated signing, and supporting Traffic Regulation Order. These restrictions have not yet been used in Telford and Wrekin, but may be considered on a case by case basis.

In other circumstances where a parked vehicle is blocking access along the footway, this offence is called ‘obstruction’ and could still be enforced by the Police.

With regard to the national position, we are awaiting the outcome of ongoing national discussions on the potential for additional powers being added to Civil Parking contraventions to tackle this issue. Whilst these discussions are ongoing, we will continue to consider traditional solutions via Traffic Regulation Orders, partnership working with the Police and engineering solutions.

Last updated: 2.29pm on Monday 27 January 2020