Estate firm ends ‘heavy handed’ clamping contract

A PROPERTY management firm in charge of an industrial estate has terminated its contract with a clamping company after receiving complaints from customers and tenants.

The EADT reported yesterday how courier David Wood was landed with a �1,180 bill after parking for just a few minutes on the Hadleigh Road Industrial Estate in Ipswich.

Lynden Property, which manages the estate, contracted London-based City Watch Enforcement Ltd to patrol the site and Mr Wood was caught out while delivering a package to a business on the first day of their duty. But after receiving complaints from other customers and tenants, Lynden Property said it had decided to end the arrangement.

A spokesman said: “Because we feel that City Watch are not acting in the best interests of the Hadleigh Road estate, we have given them 30 days’ notice to terminate the contract, which will cease on August 14.

“(It’s down to) a combination of the way they handle the situation, (feedback from) companies and us speaking to our customers. We believe it was heavy-handed.”

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The British Parking Association (BPA), the recognised authority in the parking industry, confirmed that it “no longer recognised” City Watch after it said the company failed to comply with its code of conduct.

Andrew Martin, head of enforcement for City Watch, said the contract with Lynden Property would end soon. But he denied the firm had been kicked out of the BPA, saying it had withdrawn for its own reasons.

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He said notices detailing the levels of fines and fees for clamping and clamp removal had been clearly displayed on the Hadleigh Road Industrial Estate and claimed the company had done “nothing wrong” since starting the contract there earlier this month.

He said: “The way everyone makes it seem is that we were round the corner and waiting for him (Mr Wood) to park his van and charge him �1,180.

“We are under contract to send a van up there every day. We have done nothing, nothing wrong. We are not a cowboy outfit – there are cowboy outfits out there, but we are not one of them.”

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