A disabled pensioner has donated a refunded parking fine to charity after winning a late reprieve from private car park operator Smart Parking.
Blue badge holder Angus Greer, 77, lives with a chronic condition that causes weakness in his legs but has been battling the company for months.
The Monifieth OAP was hit with the fine after jammed meters left him unable to pay on a day trip to Perth this summer, he said.
The fine was initially for £60, but rose to £100 after he failed to pay within the given timescale.
He has now won a reprieve from Smart Parking after The Courier took up his case.
The former insurance manager has made a donation to the Salvation Army after the Perth-based firm agreed to waive the charge.
‘I said have some compassion’
Mr Greer parked in the Smart Parking-run car park on Watergate behind the former Beales department store but said broken meters meant he could not pay the £1.20 fee.
He said he was “happy” the company had listened.
“I said to them when I appealed you’ve got it wrong. I used to be an insurance manager and we treated everyone fairly.
“Part of the money is going to the Salvation Army at Christmas so at least all this has done somebody good.”
Perth’s most unpopular company?
Smart Parking has been widely criticised for its use of fines, including on a patient waiting for hospital treatment.
Director Richard Ludbrook said in March this year the company was taking a “more positive and sympathetic approach” with its customer base.
Conservative north east MSP Bill Bowman supported Mr Greer’s appeal.
He said: “It’s their responsibility to make sure visitors can pay their way.
“If that’s not available then I’d suggest money should be spent on improving access, rather than chasing people for trying to do the right thing.”
‘No issues’ with the machines
A Smart Parking spokesman said: “From our records we cannot identify any issues with the machines at the time Mr Greer parked.
“In addition Mr Greer could have paid for parking using the RingGo app.
“We would remind all motorists that they should only park in a private car park if they follow its terms and conditions of use, as if they don’t they may be liable for a charge.
“However in this particular case, as an act of compassion we have decided to cancel Mr Greer’s charge.”