This month has been good so far. I was assisting on three cases all lined up for appeal hearings this month. The Local Authorities ran away from every case. Here’s a summary:
Case #1 (Haringey)
The appeal was made on the basis that the Penalty Charge Notice did not specify the precise location of the box junction. It just said “Green Lanes”. There are many box junctions in Green Lanes, so I think Haringey should have the courtesy to tell people which one they were caught in. Generally speaking the photos don’t help.
The notice of rejection was also invalid because it stated that the recipient should respond within 28 days of the letter rather than 28 days from the service of the letter i.e. when it was received.
This case went down to the wire because Haringey did not have the guts to withdraw ahead of the appeal hearing. Thanks people.
Case #2 (Transport for London)
This case challenged the wording of the PCN, the wording of the notice of rejection and the lawfulness of the box junction markings. The junction was cited as John Islip Street & Bessborough Gardens SW1P, but Bessborough Gardens is probably better known as a section of Vauxhall Bridge Road.
This box is unlawful and unenforceable because it extends well beyond the mouth of John Islip Street in both directions. It has not been authorised by the Secretary of State for Transport.
TfL’s paperwork is also highly suspect, so I would recommend anyone getting a moving traffic PCN from them to challenge it.
At least they did have the courtesy to withdraw a few days before the hearing claiming a procedural error.
Case #3 (Haringey again)
This was one of their famous “phantom” box junctions. Representations were made on the same basis as the case above in that the junction was ambiguously specified as “Green Lanes”. When the notice of rejection came back it said that the box junction was at Green Lanes & Kimberly Gardens. Well, sorry. There is no box junction at Green Lanes & Kimberly Gardens. So how can you enforce a non-existent box junction?
Case withdrawn. The excuse was mitigating circumstances. Don’t make me laugh!
The message is, loud and clear, do not be afraid to challenge the penalty charge notice. The chances are the local authority will back down.