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Parking a van in London

After already being disillusioned by working in London because of the restrictions and legislation, I have just received a Penalty Charge Notice for £80, even though I had a valid parking ticket. The reason given by the enforcement officer was a code 24u, not parked correctly within the marking of the bay or space. But how do you get a 7 metre van within a standard 5.5 metre parking bay?

When you travel into London there are all sorts of devices for collecting details from your vehicle, from cameras to number plate recognition. From the number plate the authorities know what class of vehicle it is, it’s gross weight, who owns it, whether it has valid tax, insurance and what type of engine it conforms to. The once even sent me a photograph of myself driving behind the wheel, but that’s another story. They can automatically issue fines for not having paid the congestion charge or Low Emission Zone so why can’t they tell you that you won’t fit into a parking bay?
Now I’ve always conformed to rules and regulation but things are getting ridiculous. Even though I paid my £12.56p for parking, which Transport for London personally quoted and advised me of, knowing how big my vehicle is.  However, as I previously mentioned I still received a hefty parking fine.
My conclusion is that it is probably cheaper and less hassle to have no ticket in the first place. After all why would you want to spend anything if you’re going to receive a fine no matter what?
I telephoned the Westminster parking team and made the relevant onlie application but it was a waste of time. However there is again where it gets really silly.
The lovely lady from the City of Westminster Parking Team told me that if I knew I was coming into London I could simply telephone the suspension team. I could then tell them where I was going to park and In return my vehicle would be void of all parking permits and tickets no matter what size the vehicle. If it was just for an hour or two there wouldn’t even be a charge!
Alternatively, if I selected option 1 for the dispensation team I could park on yellow lines for up to 40 minutes!!!!
So here’s the number for all you people wishing to have hassle free parking in London:
Westminster City Council Parking Services: 0207 641 464
Press option 4 for the Suspension Team
or     option 1 for the Dispensation Team
Happy parking in London for all you van drivers!