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The Parking Sign is Obscured do I have Rights?

By: Tracy Wilkinson - Updated: 5 Aug 2019 | comments*Discuss
Parking Permit Area Parking Ticket

Q.I have just been issued with a parking ticket for "parked in a permit space without displaying a valid permit" (050908). Contravention code: 16. This was issued by a Civil Enforcement Officer working for Torridge District Council. I never saw the officer, the ticket was stuck to my drivers side window.

I don't have a parking permit, however, I was on the lookout for any parking enforcement signs, which I obviously missed. I missed the permit sign because after receiving the ticket I then located it secured to a wall bordering the pavement approximately 2-3 feet from ground level.

I believe that I originally missed this sign because another vehicle was parked (on double yellow lines I believe) obscuring it.

The sign was also located at the start of the marked parking area. I would have expected to have seen a "permit only" sign either on a post at reasonable height or on a lampost, situated towards the middle of the parking area. In your view is this sign lawfully placed and can I make a appeal about my ticket?
(Mr Jim Hunt, 28 September 2008)


Civil Enforcement Officers (CEOs) are able to enforce parking regulations in many councils and are allowed to leave the ticket on your car if you are not present.

In this case, you were parked in a parking permit area without a relevant permit, however if you can prove that the signage detailing the fact that it was a permit only area was not visible or was inappropriately placed then you may well win an appeal.

There are quite distinct guidelines on sign placement, which are issued by the Highways Agency and must be followed for restrictions to be effective. According to the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 1994, there is no specific height requirements for mounting of most signs (with some exceptions for disabled areas). However, it is assumed that the signs must always remain visible to motorists.

Councils are required to provide clear signs on every road that enters an area where there are restrictions on parking. Once inside an area that is under restriction, the council do not have to put signs on every yellow line, although if restrictions are different in one particular road to the others, this must be clearly indicated.

All signs need to be easily visible and they have to show the times when the restrictions are in effect. Check the area you received your ticket and make sure that there are signs on both sides of the road, and that they are not obscured, or too small or unreadable. If they are, you've got a great chance of winning an appeal.

If there are single and double yellow lines, then you should be aware that they must be continuous and not broken anywhere along the line. If the line is broken, then any ticket given along the line can be invalidated.

If the restriction only covers one street, then you should see a sign on every lamp post for each yellow line. If there is a 60m gap between lamp posts then there must be another signpost.

If there are parking bays along the side of the road then there should be signs within 5 metres at either end of the parking bays. There should also be signs every 30m.

If you are planning to appeal, you should try to get photographic evidence of a car blocking the sign to prove that it isn't visible if someone parks in front of it. If there isn't a car there, you should try to get a photograph of the sign as it is now, with something in shot to show the height of the sign, and to prove that it is impossible to see from where you were. Include this photographic evidence in your appeal, along with a full explanation of the events that led up to you getting the ticket.

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We received a council PCN for parking with a disabled badge because they say the area was temporarily restricted due to building work but no work was being carried out. There was a partially obscured handwritten sign and arrow (scrawl) (i kid you not in felt tip) I am pretty sure that it no way complies with Traffic Management Act or RTA 2008 so logically the ticket would be invalid. I would post a picture but not sure how surely a handwritten sign can't be legal it looked like it was written by a builder.
Graham - 5-Aug-19 @ 6:16 PM
hello i was given a PCN in Lambeth, which seems to have a lot of sketchy pcn situation i have heard. 1 way street, parked looked for a sign did not see one, only a suspension but was sitting on the grounds further did not see antyhing and i parked behind a car where people were sitting in and than walk into opposite direction of the 1 way street. Turned out it was a permit bay, the suspension sign was a pole with the permit sign turned around facing the side of the grass not the road plus the sign was not even a meter tall? in 9 years neven seen a sign this tiny Officer was sneaky took photos of the sign with my car not in sight nor did he take a photo of my car with the not showing sign from the back! My pcn appeal was denied my only way i will fight if there is a minimum height as i feel they are thieves and this was so orchestrated. love to hear feedback
uma - 15-May-19 @ 9:48 PM
Council was in process of setting upsigns, which they moved around for optimum position over a few months. They had not erected the large Residential Zone Entry signs but had one or two 9" x 9" ones in obscure places (eg behind a door canopy on a one-way, totally unseen without searching). They put up a Zone Sign effectively behind a bush in the wall so it couldn't be seen and none on the other side of the street. Having ticketed the car they couldn't get a good photo. of the illegible"bushed" one (even if legal without its twin across the road) so walked a mile to another part of town to photo one already in situ there---a completely separate and inaccessible area on the other side of a busy trunk road-- and submitted it as "at the scene" with the comment "that's what it would have said when the actual one went up! Scary!!
lil - 22-Aug-17 @ 12:45 PM
I've just been issued with an NIC for a speeding offence committed on the 19th May (85mph on a dual carriageway). The NIC itself is dated the 15th July and I received it on the 19th, so on all accounts well outside the 14 day window. How do I appeal and is there an accepted format for doing so in writing?
Baggy - 19-Jul-16 @ 12:02 PM
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