Parking Permits FAQ

Information about the University's parking permit scheme.

What is the need for parking regulation/enforcement at Staffordshire University?

There are a number of practical reasons for introducing parking regulation. Primarily is the need to ensure the safety of staff, students and visitors to the University. Inconsiderate and sometimes dangerous parking has caused access issues for local emergency services. Polite notices on vehicles were ineffective and therefore further action has been required.


Why has a private parking company been chosen to regulate the parking on campus?

Parking enforcement on private land is a specialist industry and requires detailed knowledge of the law. District Enforcement Limited has a proven track record and has established a respected status within the industry.

Their approach to parking enforcement is to have the most legally binding system in place to regulate car park use and one which has been tested in the Courts.

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Why have you chosen to issue Parking Charge Notices (PCNs)?

It is evident from previous use that the mere presence of barriers does not prevent people from parking in an inconsiderate manner. The University considered the options to severely restrict access to the parking facilities but did not consider that to be appropriate as a first step to resolve the parking problems. Clamping on private land was made illegal on 1st October 2012 and therefore, issuing PCNs is the first and most reasonable step.

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How much do permits cost and how long are they valid for?

For the 2018-2019 academic year, permits will be priced on a tiered structure. Please check the price prior to applying for your permit. A fee of £5.00 will apply for production of any amended or replacement permit.

Permits will be valid from 17th September 2018 or the date of payment (whichever is the later) until 30th September 2019.

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What do I do if I am using a temporary/courtesy vehicle?

As parking permits are issued for a specific vehicle registration, they cannot be swapped between vehicles. Your permit also comes with a counterfoil. Whenever you need to park on campus in a different vehicle or are in a new vehicle for which you are waiting for a new permit, the counterfoil may be exchanged for a day permit to display in your vehicle. You will be given back your counterfoil when you hand in your day permit. It is important to remember that the use of the counterfoil permit to obtain a day permit will mean the original permit will be invalid if seen on any vehicle parked on campus. The original permit becomes valid again once the temporary permit has been returned in exchange for the counterfoil. Please note that where it has been permitted to apply for a second vehicle permit, only the primary permit will have a useable counterfoil.

A maximum of 12 Visitor Permits will be issued to the same driver or vehicle in any academic year. Any student or colleague required to park on campus more than 12 times in an academic year must purchase a Parking Permit.

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What do I need to do if I have a permit, but have changed my vehicle permanently?

You must amend your permit by using the online permit portal. Please only use these means to notify us of a changed vehicle if you have already paid for and are in possession of your permit. There is a £5.00 administration charge to amend your record and produce a new permit.

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What should I do if I have lost my parking permit and my vehicle details are the same?

You may notify of us of the need for a replacement permit via the permit portal and a new one will be sent to you. There is a £5.00 administration charge to produce and post a new permit.

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Your University ID and registered postcode are linked to your account to help ensure permits are only issued to eligible applicants. For students please check that the postcode you enter is the same one that you used for e-enrollment term-time address. Staff should use the postcode they have on file with HR. In both cases we receive this data directly from the University.

If you are certain that your details are correct, and the system will not accept them, click on the red button to request a review of your situation by University staff.

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I'm not being offered a permit for the car parks I want to use. Can I appeal?

The University has firm policies regarding permit eligibility. If you feel that the decision in your case is incorrect, you can ask for your application to be reviewed by University staff. To do this, clicking on the "Review My Application" button on the permit eligibility page. You should not send emails to either District Enforcement or the University about moderated applications as the process has now been developed to attach the moderation to the application you are trying to make.

If you are not offered the permit you would like, it does not mean it has been refused; it simply means that further information is required from the applicant in order for a decision to be made on eligibility. In this case, you may request a temporary permit from the University to use whilst your moderation is considered. You should not use any of the parking facilities without displaying a valid permit – a moderated application does not mean you are exempt from displaying a permit.

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Do motorcycles need to display a Permit?

Motorcycles will not be required to display a permit, provided they are parked in the allocated motorcycle areas. However, if you think you will need to park your motorcycle in any of the marked parking bays then a full permit must be displayed.

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Who do I need to inform of a change of term time address?

It is important that we have the correct address on file for permit applicants to ensure that all records are up to date. Please make sure that you inform the University of any change of address. If there is any change of address from your initial permit application, you must inform the University and District Enforcement, and have the amendments approved, in order to maintain a valid parking permit.

Students

You may update your details by re-visiting the e-enrolment centre to have your main address changed there first. If you need help with this, you may contact the student information centre by email at information-centre@staffs.ac.uk.

Staff

Contact Personnel Services by email to personnelenquiries@staffs.ac.uk or by telephone to 01782 292700. Once your core address details are updated, you will then need to log in to your personal permit application record and update the full address details there.

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What could I be issued a PCN for?

A PCN will only be issued if you satisfy any one of the conditions listed on the signs at the University. These terms are stated in plain English and have been subject to consultation with the Executive and Unions, so under no circumstances could it be argued that the signs were ambiguous and open to misunderstanding.

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How do I avoid receiving a PCN?

Ensure that the manner and location in which you are parking does not fall within the clearly described chargeable conditions on the signs. Check all road markings and be sure that you are always parked well within a marked bay and also (where required) with the necessary permit for the area clearly displayed for inspection. Always remember, the parking conditions apply everywhere on campus.

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How much does a Parking Charge Notice cost?

A charge is £70. However, the discounted rate is £35, providing that the charge is paid within 14 days of the date of issue. Failure to pay the charge within 28 days may incur additional debt recovery fees of £60.


Can I pay or appeal to the Issuing Operative for the PCN?

No. Operatives are not allowed to accept payment and are under strict instructions that once a ticket has been issued it cannot be marked as settled unless paid by one of the means above or withdrawn via a valid appeals route.

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Can I challenge the PCN?

Yes. The PCN will detail; the reason for issue, date, time and location. Photographic evidence is also taken each time a charge is issued. If however, you feel the charge was wrongly issued or that there are special circumstances surrounding your case you are entitled to appeal in writing to District Enforcement Limited, PO Box 10418, Ashby, LE65 9EJ. Your appeal should contain your reasons for disputing the charge and any evidence to support the same. No appeal can be accepted via a face to face challenge or over the telephone.

If your appeal is denied you will have the right to appeal to an Independent Appeals Service. This service is free to the motorist (you) and binding upon the Operator (District Enforcement). However, you must follow District Enforcement's internal appeals procedure in the first instance.

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Can I appeal to the University?

No. Parking enforcement across the University campuses is undertaken by a private company and therefore appeals must be made directly in writing to District Enforcement Limited, PO Box 10418, Ashby, LE65 9EJ.

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If I challenge the PCN should I still pay the reduced rate?

No, as long as the challenge is received within 14 days of the issue date the case will then be put on hold until a decision has been made. If the appeal is rejected you will be given a further opportunity to pay the discounted rate but this payment must be received within 14 days of the date of the rejection letter. However, if you progress to the Independent Appeals Service and you are unsuccessful, you will be required to pay the full rate of the charge.

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What happens if I do not pay the Charge?

If you do not pay or challenge the PCN within 28 days of issue District Enforcement may write to either the permit registrant or they will write to the registered keeper after requesting the details from the DVLA. They will inform the registrant/keeper of the vehicle that they are potentially liable for the Charge under the Protection of Freedoms Act and request either full payment or proof as to the driver of the vehicle. If after this the charge is still unpaid, the registered keeper will be sent a final letter before action stating that County Court proceedings will be instigated if the charge remains unpaid.

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Who is responsible for paying a PCN?

Legally the driver is responsible, however a recent change in the law allows for the registered keeper to be pursued for the charge under certain conditions where the driver is unknown or untraceable.

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How can I pay a PCN?

Full details of how to pay the charge will be included with the notice. You will be able to pay by the following methods:

  • by bank transfer,
  • by post; (cheque or postal order) to District Enforcement Limited, PO Box 10418, Ashby de la Zouch, LE65 9EJ
  • by telephone using credit or debit card on 0844 8094522,
  • by internet using credit/debit card visiting the payment page at www.district-enforcement.co.uk.
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Are private parking charges enforceable?

There is a common misconception that the charges are unenforceable, which has resulted in a far more costly experience for some recipients of District Enforcement's parking charges when relying on such misinformation in the county courts. Binding legal precedents, and indeed the change in the law, establish parking charges as legally enforceable charges.

Parking charges are a core term of the contract formed between the motorist and District Enforcement Limited. They are not unfair, nor are they voided by any Consumer Protection legislation. These challenges have all been tested at length by the Courts and found not to succeed. Whilst it is your right to appeal to the Courts as the ultimate arbiters, you must note that it will greatly increase the costs.

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How does a private parking company have the legal right to go to Court over these charges?

The contract between the University and District Enforcement states that District Enforcement can charge for parking on University land. This gives them the necessary right (locus) to form a contract with the motorist.

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