Susan Hatton given 'second chance' to pay bus stop parking ticket

CCTV footage of Susan Hatton's car in the bus stop in Leigh-on-Sea Southend Borough Council said it was within its rights to issue the penalty

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A woman whose fine for dropping off her 84-year-old father at a bus stop rose to £695 has been given another chance to pay the original £70 penalty.

Susan Hatton, 61, from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, has so far refused to pay the fine for the "eight second" offence in her hometown in December 2011.

Southend Borough Council has given her 14 days to pay the £70.

But Mrs Hatton said she would stand by her decision to refuse to pay the fine until ordered to do so by a tribunal.

'Not permitted'

Tony Cox, executive councillor for transport, said the council was "completely within its rights" to issue the fixed penalty notice to Mrs Hatton but said she would have a second chance to pay the original fee, which would have been reduced to £35 had she paid within 14 days of the offence.

"Stopping in a bus stop is an offence under Section 243 of the Highway Code and the Traffic Management Act of 2004," Mr Cox said.

"If Ms Hatton had driven just a little further past the bus stop she could have dropped her father off without committing an offence."

Susan Hatton Susan Hatton said she would refuse to pay the fine until ordered to do so at a tribunal

"Even blue badge holders are not permitted to stop at bus stops."

Mr Cox said Mrs Hatton had not responded to the council's correspondence since her appeal was rejected.

"The council has acted correctly and lawfully throughout this whole process, but in recognition of the fact that Ms Hatton appears not to have understood the appeal process fully we are prepared to give her 14 days to pay the original £70 fixed penalty notice and will then take no further action."

A spokesperson said Mrs Hatton's request for a tribunal to decide the matter is no longer an option.

If she does not pay the £70 fee she will be liable for the full amount and bailiffs will again be instructed to clamp her car, the spokesperson said.

But bailiffs had already made a second unsuccessful attempt to seize Mrs Hatton's car on Wednesday. The council described this as a "misunderstanding".

Essex Police is investigating the theft of a wheel clamp from a vehicle on Sutton Road, Southend, on Tuesday.

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