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Bonkers Blog February 2013

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24 February (Part 2) - B&Q Belvedere endorses illegal sanctions

B&Q car park. Click to enlarge B&Q car park notice. Click to enlargeLast Sunday I walked to the site of Belvedere’s new ASDA to see how it looked on a nice sunny morning. If I had gone by car I may have noticed the changes made to the B&Q car park, or more particularly the notices they have put up. On the other hand I might not have done because I don’t usually drive down that particular access road and the signs are only to be seen where sensible motorists will have their eyes on pedestrians rather than small print.

I went off B&Q last Summer when I needed a couple of nuts and bolts for a job in the garage. Nothing massive, about 30mm by 6 or 8 would do and they wanted £1.69 each for them and not so long ago ASDA took my money for a Blu-ray disc thereby entering into a contract and then refused to supply it to me even though it was freely available elsewhere and still advertised on their own website. So on a personal note I don’t much care if they set about annoying other customers too - and it looks as though that is their intention.

To put it bluntly, that car park notice is illegal. Click on it for a readable image.

It says that if you stay there for more than three hours they will clamp your wheels. Clamping on private property has been illegal since 1st October 2012. Who will volunteer for a test case and will Bexley police get off their backsides to enforce the law? Maybe if we get Teresa O’Neill or Melvin Seymour to overstay their welcome they will spring into action.

Another thing the idiot management of B&Q have authorised is the need to display a valid permit or ticket. You will look in vain for a ticket machine in B&Q’s car park - because there isn’t one. I imagine the permit nonsense refers to B&Q renting out space to local businesses, the school teachers across the road for example - but will the average motoring customer know that?

I’m not even absolutely sure what ‘Maximum stay three hours’ means. Unlike notices such as those in use by most councils it says nothing about return visits. Can someone leave their car for an hour every day of the week? I would hope so but why should one have to guess? Is this a legally enforceable notice or not? Probably not since it is approved by the British Parking Association. That is pretty damn close to being an admission that B&Q has got into bed with a bunch of crooks.

I find the use of the term PCN to imply some sort of lawful authority particularly obnoxious, almost as bad as charging nearly two quid for a small bolt.

Note: Blog from a submission (including photographs) by a reader.


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