TRAIN bosses have agreed to waive a parking fine issued after a commuter paid for a ticket.

Lawyer Mike Townley complained to The Argus after he was told he would have to pay a £170 fine, even though he had already paid for a £2.60 ticket to park at Brighton Station.

Mr Townley accused parking firm Indigo and Govia Thames Link, which owns the car park, of unfair price hikes after they refused to accept a copy of his bank statement as proof he had paid.

Now, after The Argus stepped in, GTR agreed to waive the fine. It said Mr Townley had accidentally entered the wrong registration number for his vehicle and paid for another vehicle instead.

A spokesman for GTR said: “Having now investigated this case, we have found that the customer entered the wrong registration number of their car when they bought their ticket, so we had no record of payment for that vehicle. This would have emerged if the customer had appealed to our parking contractor or had been able to produce their receipt from the machine, which would have had their own registration number on it.

“We are grateful for this opportunity to establish what happened, and on this occasion we are happy to cancel the penalty notice. Our contractor will contact the customer directly to explain.”

However Mr Townley said he was still not satisfied. He added: “If their original penalty notice had simply said the reason for the fine it would have gone some way to explain this. The whole thing has become a parody.

“They are not entitled to charge a £100 admin fee. They are only allowed to charge admin fees when they have had to remove or impound vehicles – it is illegal to hike the price up from £70 to £100.”

Mr Townley said he was still concerned about Indigo parking and its debt collectors ZZPS’s ethics in pursuing penalties.

The Argus has already received other complaints about unfair fines.

“GTR are seeking to charge a Penalty and Admin equal to 65 times the initial parking charge when the initial charge has been paid.

“If GTR have inadequate record keeping to distinguish between who has and who hasn’t paid this could be a serious breach of Data Protection law.