Southampton council faces paying thousands to motorists over parking

Bungling council admits overcharging 12,000 motorists in Southampton and now faces forking out thousands to refund them

  • Southampton City Council charged thousands of motorists non-legal fines
  • 12,000 motorists were charged for parking in Southampton carparks overnight
  • Based on the smallest charge- 50p- the council could have received £6,000 
  • There are still thousands of motorists not getting refunded

 A bungling council has admitted overcharging 12,000 motorists for using its car parks during the evening. 

Southampton City Council charged thousands of motorists until November, 12, 2022 when they realised they had no legal authority. 

They council tried desperately to find the drivers they charged- the council resulted to putting up notices around the city’s car parks in a bid to refund the money which was wrongly taken. 

Car parking charges vary but based on the smallest possible charge- 50p- the council could have wrongly taken at least £6,000 from motorists. 

 Southampton City Council charged thousands of motorists from November, 1, 2022 until November, 12, 2022 until they realised they had no legal authority

Most of the fees are set to be automatically repaid but there are still around 2,500 drivers need to apply for their cashback. 

Motorists who paid by card through the Pay and Display machines or payments taken vis Pay By Phone should have their refunds made automatically. 

Refunds could take up to two weeks to complete. 

It works out the council, on average, received 1,000 payment a day during the time they illegally started to charge motorists. 

 It works out the council, on average, received 1,000 payment a day during the time they illegally started to charge motorists

A Southampton City Council spokesperson said: ‘The council formally apologises to all affected customers for the error, which was the result of officer oversight.

‘The council has reviewed processes to ensure this does not occur again.’

 No Penalty Charge Notices were issued for failing to display a Pay and Display ticket in the affected facilities during the period in question.

Transport cabinet member Councillor Eamonn Keogh told Southern Daily Echo: ‘We’re naturally sorry that this has occurred.

‘We ensured that an investigation took place to establish how this happened with relevant measures put in place to avoid a repeat of any such errors in the future.’

The council was not able to refund card payments taken at barrier-controlled cars parks such as: Bedford Place, Eastgate Street, Grosvenor Square and Marlands.

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