Family of dementia sufferer James Jackson says parking firm should cancel his fines - but they are refusing
The family of a dementia sufferer says a parking firm should cancel his string of parking fines - because he "forgot" to pay for a ticket by the time he parked up.
James Douglas Jackson, 71, has parked at the previously free car park at Thornaby's Golden Eagle for years.
But owners brought in new charges earlier this month.
Not realising he had to pay, James incurred three separate parking notices within three days - worth £100 each - until his family realised what had happened.
Son Adam says it's likely James, who lives in Stockton , would have seen the new signs telling motorists about the charges when he entered the car park.
But he would have "forgotten by the time he parked up - as he would have followed routine".
He's asking parking enforcement firm ARDPark to waive the penalties.
But the firm has refused to cancel them, claiming there are enough signs telling motorists about the fees.
Charges were brought in due to "increasing levels of unauthorised parking" at the site, a spokesperson has said.
Certified as safe to drive by the DVLA, former tanker driver James has regular driving retests.
He is "encouraged to follow routine", Adam claims, so he "doesn't get lost or forget what he is doing".
He plays bowls at Thornaby Pavilion regularly and has parked in the Golden Eagle's car park for eight years.
Adam said: "The parking cameras came into force on the fifth of September, my father received parking tickets on the fifth, sixth and seventh.
"He may have seen the signs but would have forgotten by the time he parked as he would have followed routine.
"I have explained this to ARDPark that manage the car park and they refuse to move in their point of view, saying
he has abused the parking rules.
"He's still allowed to drive.
"He was a tanker driver all his life, so driving keeps him young.
"He has friends there, so it's social as well.
"It was a mistake, we're not trying to get away with anything.
"We are willing to pay the normal parking charges.
"All we were saying is, help us out a bit here.
"Anyone with a mental disorder, who needs to stick with their routine, you have to give them a bit of lenience.
"They push people and try to scare them so they pay.
"We feel this company is trying to make an easy profit off vulnerable people
A spokesperson for ARDPark said firm was unable to comment on specific cases due to GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation).
They added: " We can confirm we do operate a parking management scheme on this private land that gives the public house patrons free parking.
"All other motorists are required to pay using the JustPark app or by a telephone call.
"If they have not registered for patron parking and have not paid for the entire session parked, then a Parking Charge Notice would normally be issued.
"Motorists are advised of the scheme by way of signage in and around the car park.
"There are signs all around the car park perimeter, plus additional signage at the pedestrian and vehicle entry and exit points to ensure that a motorist shouldn’t forget or miss the signage.
"We pride ourselves on ensuring that the signage is plentiful, clear and visible to the general public.
"We feel that this is sufficient for a competent motorist that reaches the level required to drive by law.
"Had a motorist parked for less than ten minutes and left the car park as they did not want to pay, a Charge would not have been issued."
Thornaby Pavilion, they added, also "indicates how to get free car parking" on its website.