Store says sorry for charge
A BEXHILL couple was shocked to receive a £70 parking fine from Aldi in London Road for outstaying their welcome by 18 minutes.
The demand was dropped when Ann and Bob Crouch of North Road complained and now Ann wants to help others do the same.
Notice of the fine came a week after they had been food shopping in preparation for a family visit.
They spent £76 and were unaware they’d gone over the 1hr 30min limit in the car park.
Ann, 69, said her initial reaction was anger but this soon turned to fear for Bob’s health - the 70 year old has “a very bad heart condition” having suffered two stroke and walks with the aid of a stick. Because of this a disability badge is displayed in their car which should have entitled them to three hours.
She said: “I was really angry. Bob is the laid-back one but I was afraid he would have a heart attack. We have been living our lives on a knife’s edge...
“When your husband has had a couple of heart attacks, and you care about him so much, you don’t want anything to shake or upset him.
“I was very angry at first and and didn’t want to shop there again. I wonder how many others have had this fine sent to them and paid up without questioning it.”
The couple had, she said, arrived at Aldi on October 26 at approximately 11am. They were expecting a visit from their son and his wife plus four grand children so took their time as they went around the store which was busy. They had not been able to park in a disability bay because these were already taken.
“We had to walk way across the car park and pack the bags into the car, then I took the trolley back and got back in the car. It was very busy and we couldn’t pull out immediately...and that’s how we overstepped the mark by 18 minutes. But we don’t take a watch with us - time is irrelevant to us.
“Then the very next week we were getting our coats on and just about to go out when this came through the post, this parking charge for £70.
Ann phoned Aldi to complain and the fine was cancelled after she sent in a copy of Bob’s disability badge.
Ann said: “I would like anyone to come forward that has received this parking fine and paid it. I want to know how many people have paid it without questioning it, and maybe didn’t want to be bothered by it, and hopefully try and get their money back for them.”
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Wednesday 22 May 2013
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