Parking fine case heads to Supreme Court

Parking fine case heads to Supreme Court

A chip shop owner is refusing to accept parking charges he received more than two years ago.

Barry Beavis, from Chelmsford in Essex, lost his landmark legal action against private car park operator ParkingEye earlier this year over an £85 fine for overstaying his allotted two hours of free parking.

The 48-year-old will now go to the Supreme Court - the highest court in the UK - after it agreed to hear his appeal.

Mr Beavis was handed the £85 charge by management company ParkingEye after he overstayed a two-hour limit at Riverside Retail Park's car park in Chelmsford in April 2013. Unhappy with this, he refused to pay.

But a judge at Cambridge County Court in May last year ruled that the £85 fine was lawful and did not breach the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations.

Legal action followed in which Mr Beavis asked the Court of Appeal to rule that the charge was excessive, unfair and legally unenforceable.

A lawyer representing him argued that the charges should be set at levels meant only to compensate for any loss in achieving the aim of deterring over-stayers, and not to make large profits off the back of them.

In April this year, however, the court unanimously dismissed his challenge, saying the amount was not "extravagant or unconscionable".

The judges ruled that the charge was clearly signposted and legitimately intended to deter people overstaying in a busy city centre car park.

They also said that Mr Beavis had "entered into a contract" with ParkingEye and agreed to abide by the rules when he drove into the car park.

Mr Beavis pledged after the ruling to take his case on to the Supreme Court - and he has remained true to his word.

His appeal against the Court of Appeal's decision will begin on July 21.

Copyright Press Association 2015