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Westminster Council (Read 12,991 times)
reggie
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Westminster Council
Dec 13th, 2007 at 11:18am
 
I drove into central London on Sunday evening, which I do very rarely,and noticed that in some areas parking meters have been dispensed with and instead there are signs telling you to phone in with your credit card details to pay the parking fee and yes, you've guessed it ,it's an 0870 number.
Had to share that with you. Fortunately on a Sunday evening we were able to find a free parking space !
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Heinz
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #1 - Dec 13th, 2007 at 11:58am
 
There are a couple of alternative 020 7 numbers for the 0870 428 4009 number in the unverified database:

Quote:
Westminster City Council - 0870 428 4009 - 020 7823 4567 - Parking Services; 24 Hour Customer Services number for parking in Westminster.

Westminster Pay parking      - 0870 428 4009 - 020 7641 7623 - This is the customer service number as well as the parking number. You now get charged extra for this 'service' so give them as much hassle as possible.
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« Last Edit: Dec 13th, 2007 at 12:03pm by Heinz »  

After years of ignoring govt. guidelines & RIPPING OFF Council Tax payers using 0845 numbers, Essex County Council changed to 0345 numbers on 2 November 2015
WWW  
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Alternative
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #2 - Dec 13th, 2007 at 2:53pm
 
I went to the following website run by WCC and noted the following telephone numbers: -
Customer Services: 020 7823 4567 (24hrs)
WCC car parks enquiries: 0800 243 348

So here you have both a 24 hour geographical number and a free phone number.  I would keep a note of these numbers and would ring these and absolutely INSIST on being transferred to the appropriate department when parking where this pay by phone facility is displayed.
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Dave
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #3 - Dec 13th, 2007 at 3:01pm
 
Details here:

http://www.westminster.gov.uk/transportandstreets/parking/cashlesspromo.cfm

Looks like it's an automated system.

Someone could submit a FOI request. I wonder how much telephone revenue the number generates....  Huh
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Keith
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #4 - Dec 13th, 2007 at 3:54pm
 
I'm pretty sure this is the same set up that Jeremy Clarkson lambasted on Top Gear sometime ago (in his usual over the top but funny and effective manner).

a) it assumes you have a mobile phone with you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

b) he demoed it on the program, it just went on and on and on. Comment about needing to go out and by a battery charger!!!! And of course if you have a PAYG....
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NGMsGhost
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #5 - Dec 16th, 2007 at 12:21pm
 
Keith wrote on Dec 13th, 2007 at 3:54pm:
it assumes you have a mobile phone with you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!..


And also that it is charged and has enough credit to make a several minute long 0870 call!!.  All of which is outrageous when you consider the consequences of not being able to pay for your parking meter bay.

Since the system is wholly designed for use from mobiles how can they possibly have used an 0870 number.  The system vastly cuts their costs in no longer having parking equipment on the street and by stopping one driver picking up the expired time of another driver (on a meter as used to happen) and yet they try to further increase the parking charge by prohibitively expensive 0870 calls from mobiles and take a rakeoff on those 0870 calls.

Quite unbelievable.  Are their councillors asleep on Westminster City Council.

Presumably the thought seems to be that as you will already be paying 8 per day (although local residents only pay 80p per day) so won't care about it costing 1 or more in mobile charges just to pay for your parking time!).  The only time to visit and park in the Congestion Charge Area is on a Sunday when it is all entirely free.
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bbb_uk
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #6 - Dec 16th, 2007 at 9:27pm
 
NGMsGhost wrote on Dec 16th, 2007 at 12:21pm:
Since the system is wholly designed for use from mobiles how can they possibly have used an 0870 number..
As an 0870 is apparently only charged at national rate from anywhere in the UK!

I thought you knew that NGMsG! Smiley
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« Last Edit: Dec 16th, 2007 at 9:28pm by bbb_uk »  
 
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derrick
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #7 - Dec 17th, 2007 at 12:17pm
 
bbb_uk wrote on Dec 16th, 2007 at 9:27pm:
NGMsGhost wrote on Dec 16th, 2007 at 12:21pm:
Since the system is wholly designed for use from mobiles how can they possibly have used an 0870 number..
As an 0870 is apparently only charged at national rate from anywhere in the UK!

I thought you knew that NGMsG!   Smiley


And why would they need a "national rate" number to call round the corner? It's not as if you are calling to the other end of the Country!

Don't all shout the answer together  Shocked
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NGMsGhost
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #8 - Dec 17th, 2007 at 4:17pm
 
bbb_uk wrote on Dec 16th, 2007 at 9:27pm:
As an 0870 is apparently only charged at national rate from anywhere in the UK!Smiley


But they only brought this in very recently so they can't deploy any excuses that 0870 was the same as National Rate at the time they took their decision etc, etc.

If they had it as an extra way to pay it wouldn't be so bad.  Especially if you could buy extra time while you were away from the car up the maximum allowed on that bay (often 4 hours now in most of the Congestion Charge area).  But to make it the only way to pay is quite outrageous.
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allegro
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #9 - Dec 18th, 2007 at 8:15am
 
I've seen this but haven't (yet) used it. On all the signs I've seen you can also pay by text message and the number for this looks like an ordinary 07xxx mobile. The 3rd digit is 7 or 8 or 9 so it isn't an 07000 type scam.

I don't like this method of paying (phone or text) but it does solve the problem of failed pay and display machines and prevents money being nicked from them. I've also noticed P&D machines that only take cards, not cash.

I just hope the infrastructure all works OK because there's no bit of paper to display and if the warden's machine claims you haven't paid and they ticket/clamp/remove your car you will rightly feel annoyed.
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« Last Edit: Dec 18th, 2007 at 8:16am by allegro »  
 
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irrelevant
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #10 - Dec 18th, 2007 at 8:38am
 
allegro wrote on Dec 18th, 2007 at 8:15am:
I just hope the infrastructure all works OK because there's no bit of paper to display and if the warden's machine claims you haven't paid and they ticket/clamp/remove your car you will rightly feel annoyed.


I guess that if you pay via text message, you can keep a copy of the message on your phone as proof that you tried.

However - texts are not guaranteed to arrive and I'm sure I've read somewhere about their use being discouraged in time-critical applicaitons, such as for TV voting. (note how they disappeared as an option during the last series of Big Brother.)

I've certainly experienced text messages not arriving or arriving days later.  I'd be mightilly p**d off if my car was clamped because of that happening.
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NGMsGhost
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #11 - Dec 18th, 2007 at 10:41am
 
irrelevant wrote on Dec 18th, 2007 at 8:38am:
However - texts are not guaranteed to arrive and I'm sure I've read somewhere about their use being discouraged in time-critical applicaitons, such as for TV voting. (note how they disappeared as an option during the last series of Big Brother.)


You can however set most mobile phones to provide a read receipt when your message is downloaded to the receiving party's phone (or phone system in this case) but that message just appears on your phone screen and does not remain in your message box and it only guarantees the message was received and does not show when it was read.

To make mobile phone 0870 payment the only means of payment is simply outraegous.

Quote:
I've certainly experienced text messages not arriving or arriving days later. I'd be mightilly p**d off if my car was clamped because of that happening.


Vodafone has a system callled Call Catcher that you can use if you don't use Voicemail that sends you texts when you next turn on a phone that was off or when a phone comes back in to network coverage that was out of coverage and the texts tell you the numbers of people who tried to call you during that period and the time and date.  Generally these messages come through straigh away when you turn your phone on but sometimes they turn up 12 or 18 hours later due to a crashed Vodafone application or server somewhere.

This technology is not a safe way to pay for parking when you bear in mind what happens to your car if it is not parked legally with a valid ticket.

Small wonder it has been deployed by Westminster City Council who have one of the most aggressive and nasty parking enforcement divisions in the country.  I am sure their occupancy statistics for these bays show that they are much less used than bays deploying normal technology for paying for parking.
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irrelevant
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #12 - Dec 22nd, 2007 at 1:48pm
 
NGMsGhost wrote on Dec 18th, 2007 at 10:41am:
You can however set most mobile phones to provide a read receipt when your message is downloaded to the receiving party's phone (or phone system in this case) but that message just appears on your phone screen and does not remain in your message box and it only guarantees the message was received and does not show when it was read.

Yup, but that has never worked on any of the phones I've had (on O2), and as you say, you can't keep them to prove you sent the message.

It seems a very bad idea certainly...
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jgxenite
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #13 - Dec 22nd, 2007 at 5:28pm
 
OT, but to get a read receipt with O2, prefix the text message with *0# (just that).
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I don't mind helping you with your request as long as you read the instructions!
 
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allegro
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Re: Westminster Council
Reply #14 - Jan 2nd, 2008 at 8:27am
 
Westminster are not the only council to  use pay by phone for parking. I was in Southwark yesterday and there was a pay by phone notice stuck to all the pay machines. The bad news is that not all the notices actually had the phone number on them! Now for the good news: It was an 020 number. More good news: You could still pay by cash, it was clearly marked as an alternative to paying by cash. Last bit of good news: It was a bank holiday and I didn't have to pay a penny!
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