Framlingham: Coach boss vows to boycott town after parking row

THE boss of a Suffolk coach company last night vowed to boycott an Essex town after being fined on a parking ticket technicality.

Stuart Rogers, of Thompson Coaches in Framlingham, said he will not return to Colchester.

One of his coaches was given a �25 fine notice while it was legally parked in the town’s Sheepen Road coach and lorry park.

Last night a spokeswoman for the borough council said the fine had ben revoked - but Mr Rogers said it did little to change his mind.

“I haven’t heard from them yet,” he said. “They should have used their common sense in the first place. The whole episode has been totally unnecessary.”

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He said his driver bought a �5.50 ticket to park the coach after dropping off 40 people for a recent shopping trip.

“When he returned they had put a ticket on it,” Mr Rogers continued. “He went to speak to the traffic warden and they said they couldn’t read the front of the ticket.

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“It’s not the type of ticket you can stick on a windscreen, so the driver put it on the dashboard. It must have blown over when he got out.

“The parking attendant even took a picture of the back of the ticket - there’s a serial number on it.”

Mr Rogers contacted the parking department at the borough council and paid the fine - for fear of it doubling if it was not settled within 28 days.

He said his company would not be returning to Colchester, instead opting for other towns that were more coach friendly.

“I won’t bring a coach party shopping to Colchester any more - it’s the principal,” he said. “I’ll go to other towns where we get free parking.

“It just seemed like a case of the council being petty. If they had tickets that you could stick to a windscreen then this type of thing wouldn’t happen.”

Mr Rogers has also written to industry magazine, RouteOne, to tell others of his experience.

A Colchester Borough Council parking spokeswoman said a notice was issued because a valid parking ticket was not visible.

“Colchester Borough Council advised the driver, upon receipt of the notice, to appeal the parking notice by sending in the valid ticket,” she said. “This has now been received and the driver has been informed that the parking fine has been revoked.”

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