'Operator Error' Leads to Holiday Fines in Chiswick

Council says it is cancelling PCNs incorrectly issued in Grove Park

Access is currently restricted for vehicles entering Hartington Road
Access is currently restricted for vehicles entering Hartington Road

January 6, 2023

Hounslow Council has admitted that an ‘operator error’ resulted in Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs) being sent out to drivers in Grove Park over the Christmas holidays.

The local authority had announced earlier that the access restrictions on Staveley Road and Hartington Road were being suspended between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day and signs were covered up for the duration.

Despite this, from 26 to 29 December, any motorist entering the roads during the normally restricted periods received a fine with 169 PCNs being issued.

The council realised the error on Tuesday 3 January and anybody who has received a fine should now get a letter notifying them that the PCN has been cancelled. The council says that nobody had paid the fine as yet so it has not been necessary to give out any refunds.

Conservative Councillor for Chiswick Homefields, Jack Emsley, wrote to the council’s traffic department to ask for clarification, and has confirmed that all fines issued during the Christmas period will be cancelled.

He said, “I’m pleased that we have been able to secure the cancellation of these fines, but the fact is that they should never have been issued in the first place. I received a number of emails from distressed residents who received fines over the Christmas period, at a time when restrictions had been lifted and signs had been covered up. Whilst it is positive that they will not have to pay these fines, this error by the council has caused a huge amount of distress to local people over the Christmas and New Year period. I’ve asked for clarification as to how this happened and how the council will avoid this happening again.”

Restrictions were set to be lifted again on Saturday 7 January and Saturday 14 January to coincide with the restarting of the A4 roadworks, which will require full eastbound closures between M4 junction 2 and Hogarth Roundabout but these have now been cancelled due to the rail strikes. This means that enforcement will be taking place on those days.

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