Thursday, 30 October 2014

Parking at the Odeon cinema - addendum

A previous post has already covered some of the complications and possible pitfalls of car-parking at the Odeon Cinema but since then another little trap for the unwary has come to light.

Unbelievably, even in these days of radio- or internet-controlled time-keeping, you cannot rely on the clocks in the ticket-issuing machine being set to the correct time.

For example, you may find, for any of a number of reasons, that your drive to the cinema took a little less time than you allowed for and you therefore find yourself in West Street, approaching Churchill Square 2, a few minutes before 5.30pm.  To be on the safe side you may also decide to pull over to the side of the road for a few minutes, until your phone, Omega watch, or car clock indicates 5.35pm, on the mistaken assumption that you would thereby safely qualify for 3 hours free parking. If so you could very well be unlucky since you cannot rely on the clocks in the ticket-issuing machine being synchronised with national time. 

On two occasions over the past few years the ticket has shown my arrival a few minutes before 5.30 when I had timed my arrival for a few minutes after. On both occasions I was charged at the minimum rate (currently £3 for 2 hours) for those few minutes and on both occasions the car park attendant agreed that the ticket machine time was in error. On the first occasion I managed eventually to obtain a refund. On the last occasion, several weeks ago, I am STILL waiting.

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