Hundreds of motorists may have wrongly been hit with parking fines at a supermarket in Salendine Nook, it has been claimed.

It’s thought cameras at the Salendine Shopping Centre, which has Sainsbury’s as its main tenant, have been issuing tickets for three customer parking spaces down the side of the building.

It’s not clear just how long this has been going on as the parking company involved, Smart Parking, has failed to answer several questions such as when the camera started operating and how many people have been fined.

Lucy Bailey from Golcar received two fines within a week after parking there and quickly appealed them both.

She said: “I’ve parked there in the past and there were no problems. There are signs beyond those parking spaces which clearly state Staff Parking but that’s clearly a warning to people who park in the staff car park at the top and each space up there also has an individual sign on it. There are no signs on the three customer parking spaces.

“People have always been able to park in those three spaces so dozens of motorists must be parking there every day. It makes me wonder if hundreds of motorists may have been fined which would have led to fines running into many thousands of pounds.”

The three spaces and the signage above, and below, the staff car parking area

Lucy disputed the parking tickets but Smart Parking refused her appeal and upheld the fine which was £100 discounted to £60 if she paid within 14 days for each of them.

Lucy then appealed to the independent parking appeals service Parking On Private Land Appeals (POPLA) which emailed her this week to say the fine has suddenly been dropped.

In an email to her it states: “The operator has reviewed your appeal and chosen to cancel the parking charge.”

The change of heart has happened since Huddersfield Hub contacted Bhullar Brothers, the company which owns Salendine Shopping Centre, to alert them to what was happening.

In a statement they said: “Customer satisfaction is – and always has been – of paramount importance to the company. Bhullar Brothers were not aware of any issues until they were brought to their attention a few days ago.   

“Consequently, Bhullar Brothers will be liaising with Smart Parking this week in order to ascertain whether or not some customers have been inadvertently issued with parking charge notices with a view to any unfounded charges being refunded by Smart Parking.”

Smart Parking failed to respond to several questions from Huddersfield Hub or provide a statement.

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.