A Hassocks father has told of his anger after being hit with a £100 fine for parking outside his own home.
David Rogers, 59, a retired electrical manager, lives at Station Cottages opposite Hassocks railway station.
He said he has parked outside his flat since he moved in six years ago – but on January 25, he was ‘shocked’ to discover a fine had been left on his car bonnet.
He said: “A company called Indigo working on behalf of Southern (Govia Thameslink Railway) has started issuing parking enforcement notices to railway neighbours living adjacent to Hassocks station.
“According to the Indigo parking enforcement operative I challenged at the time he fully intends to return every day and ticket my vehicle if it is parked in the designated residents’ parking area outside my property.
“The residents of Station Cottages have been parking outside their properties for many years, if not decades, without being penalised.
“The sudden targeting of residents referred to by Southern as ‘valued railway neighbours’ is purely a money-making exercise and thoroughly reprehensible – I certainly don’t feel valued.”
David, who served with the army’s Royal Signals for 17 years, is challenging the fine. “I have a solicitor on the case,” he said, adding: “It is a big company harassing local residents.”
He said Southern (GTR) has also opened up the parking spaces for rail users.
“This means that we will not have to only pay for parking, but we will also have to compete for parking spaces outside our own properties,” he said.
The 59-year-old is now waiting to hear from the GTR’s legal team, he said.
Roger Perkins, for GTR, said: “Parking is at a real premium at Hassocks with more and more commuters wanting to leave their cars there.
"We took over Southern Rail in 2015 and have no record of these bays being for the sole use of residents.
“Therefore, when one of the people living in the cottages asked us to reline the bays we asked for some form of proof to help us establish this apparent right. This was not forthcoming.
“Since the parking fines were issued, evidence has now been provided by two of the residents and this is being reviewed.
"If it does prove a legal right then we will work with the residents to protect their bays and, of course, rescind immediately the parking fines which we have currently put on hold.”