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Supermarket is sorry for park fine bungle

Harold Hinett and Joan Hinett with the parking ticket from Aldi.

Harold Hinett and Joan Hinett with the parking ticket from Aldi.

A supermarket has apologised to a pensioner after he was wrongly fined £70.

Staff at Aldi in Cleveleys incorrectly told 83-year-old Harold Hinett he would only have to register his vehicle on their in-store system once, and could then park there as many times as he liked because he had a disabled parking badge.

But that was not correct and Mr Hinett, of North Drive, Cleveleys, received a fine from Parking Eye – the firm running Aldi’s car park – because his car’s registration was not put into the system again when he shopped there last month.

Mr Hinett refused to pay because he claimed he had only done as staff had instructed him, and was ready to boycott the shop incase he received another fine he could not

afford.

Coun Andrea Kay, Wyre Council’s representative on Cleveleys Chamber of Trade, demanded the supermarket apologise to Mr Hinett after bosses agreed there had been a mix up. The fine has now been written off.

Mr Hinett, who lives in Cleveleys with his wife Joan, 86, said: “I’m glad I don’t have to pay because I didn’t think I was at fault. I thought I’d done everything right and questioned what I was getting a ticket for. We’ve shopped at Aldi for years but I said I can’t go in there again because of this.” Aldi introduced a system when the Cleveleys store opened where customers using the free car park have to input their registration on an in-store computer each time they go to prove they are shopping there.

Coun Kay said: “I will be requesting an apology because it’s absolutely horrendous to see the pressure (the couple) has been under. I want them to shop in Cleveleys and to feel safe doing so. We need to get the customers back into Aldi feeling confident. I don’t want pensioners unhappy.”

An Aldi spokesman said: “We have apologised to Mr Hinett after he was incorrectly given a parking fine due to an administrative error and we are pleased he has accepted our gesture of goodwill.”

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