LETTER: Parking fines spoil the joy of Towneley Park

I VISITED Towneley Park on May 1st, a beautiful warm Bank Holiday with blue cloudless skies.

Lots of visitors were enjoying the amenities, children were playing on the swings and there was lots of laughter and excited screaming coming from the fun fair where the music was not intrusive. There were also lots of people strolling around the hall and admiring the wonderful array of flowers – a real credit to the gardeners there.

A perfect day, except there is a person waiting to pounce on any unsuspecting visitor who happens to arrive by car and find all parking bays full, either for disabled cars or otherwise. I arrived by car to visit the bowling green and was given a parking ticket three minutes exactly after arriving. I was following the “Blue Badge” guide which states: “Do not park in a position that would obstruct or impede other traffic vehicular or pedestrian”. This instruction was followed to the letter.

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I am a big fan of Towneley Park and hope I will continue to spend many hours there. I have reluctantly paid the £25 but regretfully, as the fee is not paid directly to Burnley Council but to Vhipside at Chippenham, Wiltshire. So I wonder who employs this eagle-eyed “warden”. Is she making a fortune in commission? Does she actually enjoy her job? Coming back to my car I counted five yellow envelopes tucked inside visitors’ windscreens – £125 in 15 minutes. So much for a happy enjoyable Bank Holiday at Burnley’s “jewel in the crown”.