Royston dad prevails in parking plight brought about by ‘confusing signage’ in town centre

PUBLISHED: 17:50 05 September 2017 | UPDATED: 21:10 05 September 2017

Gary Riches was issued a parking ticket after paying to park in the wrong car park.

Gary Riches was issued a parking ticket after paying to park in the wrong car park.


A dad-of-two from Royston who ended up paying for a space in the wrong car park “due to unclear signage” has said he is relieved that the ticket he incurred has been withdrawn – but wishes “common sense had prevailed sooner”.

Gary Riches parked in front of the Carlo & Co’s barbers in Market Hill on Friday, using the RingGo app to pay for a ticket.

The app came up with Market Place as the nearest payment option, when it turns out Gary was parked in the adjacent Angel Pavement car park. Both are run by North Herts District Council.

He told the Crow: “I didn’t have cash on me and I was running late for an opticians appointment, so I used the RingGo app There wasn’t clear signs as to which car park I was in, and I was equal distance to both paying machines.

He said: “It just frustrated me because the ticket said I hadn’t paid to park at all, I don’t have much time as it is, and it’s all stress I don’t need.

“I have got enough to deal with, my mother passed away last Monday, and I was having to put my time and energy into disputing the ticket, and I need to do so many other things.”

Gary disputed the fine online and shared what happened on Royston Reporting Page on Facebook.

He said: “I don’t think I’ve had that many comments on anything I’ve posted – not even when my children were born!”

Gary moved to Royston in 2014 with Sophie, his wife of eight years. The couple have two children – Evie, five, and one-year-old Oscar.

The 36-year-old found out this afternoon that the parking ticket had been cancelled by North Herts District Council.

Councillor Ray Shakespeare-Smith, NHDC’s executive member for policy, transport and green issues, said: “NHDC will look into the apparent confusion over the car parks at Angel Pavement and Market Hill in Royston and seek to ensure that they are clearly identifiable.

“While we do not normally discuss individual parking charge notices, clearly an honest mistake was made and parking had been paid for – so the penalty charge will be cancelled.”

Gary said: “While I am relieved that the PCN has now been cancelled, all of this could have been avoided with the smallest amount of common sense being applied.

“Instead, there has been undue pressure and uncertainty at a time when I really could have done without it.

“I’d really like to know how many PCNs have been served in those those spaces, how many were contested, and how many of those contested were upheld?”

“Also, whilst I appreciate they have told you the PCN has been cancelled, I’m still yet to hear anything. I dread to think how long I’d been worrying if the Crow hadn’t got involved.”


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Royston Crow visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Royston Crow staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Royston Crow account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 17:59

The achievements of a Royston woman with Down’s syndrome are the subject of a short film that has been picked up by festivals around the world – and it was made by the 33-year-old’s own mum.

Yesterday, 15:00

A Year 4 class from Icknield Walk First School in Royston have visited the town’s Greneway Middle School to experience science in a big lab as part of their topic ‘animals as humans’.

Yesterday, 09:04

A man has been arrested in connection with an alleged knife attack in Meldreth.

Yesterday, 07:01

The vascular surgery team at the East and North Herts NHS Trust has received national recognition for being the second fastest in the country for unblocking carotid arteries – a procedure which must be done quickly to reduce the risk of further strokes in patients.


Most read stories


Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Read the Royston Crow e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter