This blog serves to answer the question “How Can I Challenge A Chelmsford PCN?  You need to be aware of all the traffic contravention codes applicable to the road junctions and parking zones which you are driving on or parking into in Chelmsford City. A bus lane entry PCN is paid or challenged on the Essex Highways website, which deals with Bus Lane PCNs served in Chelmsford City Council.

How Can I Challenge A Chelmsford PCN?

In order to successfully challenge a PCN from Chelmsford City Council, you should maintain a record of your road presence in the council by requesting a passenger in your vehicle to take photographs or to capture your journey on a digital camera. Attention to detail in these evidence videos or still photographs can enable you to prove that you had parked a few inches away from a yellow line or had stopped your vehicle just outside a box junction.

A CCTV Bus Lane or CCTV Parking camera may miss out on some of the details which you can provide from a closer angle if you (or someone with you) have made an alternative video of the scene. If you don’t invest some resources and make it a habit of creating a video log of your road trips, precious (potential) evidence will be lost forever. This data should be uploaded to your computer and stored in a separate folder, with the document name mentioning the date stamp from the video or still photograph.

The time and effort given in filming, uploading and maintaining digital records of your vehicle’s movements and parking status will end up saving you £70 in fines, each time you get a PCN in Chelmsford City Council. All you have to do when you are registering an online appeal is to simply attach your video from the relevant date and time and explain by mentioning established grounds why you think the PCN has been served in error.

In many cases, PCNs are not enforceable and you may be able to win your case and avoid having to pay your fine.

You could begin the process by speaking to an online solicitor for as little as £5. 

What is the procedure for appealing against a PCN from the Chelmsford City Council?

You can appeal against a PCN from the Chelmsford City Council by writing a formal representation letter.  The informal challenge stage only applies to Parking PCN served by a CEO or to  a CCTV Bus Lane PCN.You can write a PCN appeal to the Council mentioning your PCN number and vehicle registration number. 

In this letter you can  include the text of the sections of the Traffic Management Act 2004 or the Road Traffic Act 1984 relating to your case.The PCN appeal should also be signed and dated by you on the last page. This letter along with any documents, pay or display tickets or photographs attached as proof needs to be sent to:

Civic Centre,

Duke Street,

Chelmsford,

Essex,

CM1 1JE

You can also challenge your Chelmsford City PCN online by clicking here  The South Essex Parking Partnership website provides an online appeals portal for challenging Chelmsford City PCNs.On this webpage you need to enter your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number (as well as a web code provided on your notice). 

Once you are ready to enter your appeal you can click “”Continue” to start typing your PCN challenge. You can view CCTV camera footage of your traffic contravention before constructing your PCN appeal.The reasons for you disputing the PCN must be listed down on paper first and explained using the wording of relevant traffic regulations. These reasons need to be formally compiled into an appeals letter to be submitted to the Chelmsford City Council along with any material evidence.

So you can take 3 to 4 days for recollecting your thoughts about the traffic violation incident and even check your vehicle to recall the position in which it was parked that day.Evidence including photos and videos can be attached online using the South Essex Parking Partnership website.

You have to make the challenge to your PCN within 28 days of receiving it.

If the Chelmsford City Council accepts your PCN appeal, the PCN will be annulled and you will not be liable for paying any monetary penalty. In case the council sends you a “Notice of Rejection” by disapproving of your representation you will have to pay the amount mentioned on your PCN.

What is the procedure for appealing against a Bus Lane entry PCN from Chelmsford City Council?

You can use the Essex Highways website for challenging a Bus Lane entry PCN from the Chelmsford City Council. After you click on “Enter your PCN Details”, you will be redirected to the Essex County Council Bus Lane payments page.

 On this page you will be required to type in your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number and click “Search”. Your PCN details including any photo or video evidence from the scene will be displayed. This Bus Lane payments and appeals service has the same account so you must be careful not to click on the PCN payment option after you log in.

You should compile a PCN challenge by referring to the Bus Lane contravention code 34, and by listing down any mitigating circumstances which influenced your actions. This appeal should demonstrate your active mental presence to avoid the no entry zone or bus lane.

 You might have turned your vehicle in the wrong direction to avoid a collision with another vehicle, which should be backed by photographs or video evidence (these can be captured on film by a passenger with you on the day of the incident)

 Evidence including photos and videos can be attached online using the Essex County Council website’s database of Bus Lane PCNs (from Chelmsford City Council)

What is a Penalty Charge Notice?

A Penalty Charge Notice is a fine or monetary penalty for driving violations. A PCN can be issued in response to any traffic contravention such as a parking contravention, a moving traffic contravention or a bus lane violation.

A PCN may be issued by a Civil Enforcement Officer or by CCTV.  You will be given 28 days to respond to a PCN. If you don’t pay the PCN within 28 days you will be issued a charge certificate.

A charge certificate will increase the PCN penalty amount by 50% of its original value.

How much is the PCN fine for each of the 3 kinds of PCNs served in Chelmsford City Council?

The 3 kinds of PCNs served in Chelmsford City Council are a Parking PCN, a Bus Lane PCN and a Moving Traffic PCN. 

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a Chelmsford City Council Parking PCN is set at £70 for a higher level traffic violation and £50 for a lower level traffic violation. A 50% discount applies to early payment so If you pay your higher level parking PCN within 14 days, you just have to pay £35. Similarly, if you pay your lower level parking PCN within 21 days, you just have to pay just £25.

If you pay a Bus Lane PCN within 28 days, you will be charged £70 and if you pay it within 21 days, you just have to pay £35. The PCN fine for a moving traffic PCN in Chelmsford City Council is £70. There is a 50% discount for paying it within 14 days, which reduces the fine to £35.

How Can I Pay A Bus Lane PCN in Chelmsford City Council?

You can use the Essex Highways website for paying a Bus Lane PCN from the Chelmsford City Council. After you click on “Enter your PCN Details”, you will be redirected to the Essex County Council Bus Lane payments page. On this page you will be required to type in your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number and click “Search”. 

You can then view your Bus Lane PCN details, including CCTV evidence and pay your PCN by entering your payment card information.

How can I pay my Chelmsford City PCN fine?

You can pay your Chelmsford PCN through the postal service, by telephone, at the post office in cash, online here or at a Paypoint outlet near you.

The South Essex Parking Partnership website provides an online payment service for Chelmsford City PCN fines. You need to open this webpage to access the Penalty Charge Notice payments portal. First you need to identify whether your PCN number begins with XP, CF, BI or CP.

You have 4 different entry spaces on the payments page for each of these PCN codes. Once you have entered your PCN number in the relevant entry field, you should type in the amount of the PCN fine, which depends on how many days have passed since the PCN was issued. You can enter one of the 4 amounts applicable to your PCN from a choice of £70, £35, £50 or £25. If you enter this amount incorrectly your fine will remain unpaid. 

Your vehicle registration number also has to be entered after clicking “Add to Basket” After verifying these details you will be required to provide your payment card details. Chelmsford City Council accepts payments by Paypal, VisaCard, MasterCard, Maestro Card, DeltaCard, Electron Card, and Solo Card. Chelmsford City Council does not accept American Express for PCN payments.

Your online payments form times out after 20 minutes, so you should not leave the screen idle while entering your PCN details.

 You can also pay on the Chelmsford City council’s automated payments hotline by dialing: 0300 456 0489.. Next, you will be required to provide your payment card details, PCN Number, and vehicle registration number. This payment hotline is active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The Chelmsford City Council also accepts PCN fine payments by post. You need to send a check or postal order  to “Chelmsford City Council”. You can write down your PCN Number and Vehicle Registration Number on the back of your check or postal order.

Send your PCN fine payment to this address:

Civic Centre,

Duke Street,

Chelmsford,

Essex,

CM1 1JE

You can also pay your PCN at the Chelmsford City post office in cash. You can visit the Chelmsford City post office at any time between 9:00am and 5:00 pm from Monday to Saturday.

You can pay your Chelmsford City PCN in cash by using Paypoint. To pay you will have to search for your nearest PayPoint location here by entering your postcode. A letter containing your unique Paypoint barcode is required to access the payments system. There are over 40 PayPoint locations in Chelmsford City Council. Once you have located your nearest Paypoint outlet, you can visit the location to pay your PCN in cash.

Your nearest Paypoint location in Chelmsford City may be:

  • Mc Colls located at 

69 Watchhouse Road,

Chelmsford CM2 8PU

  • Burgeon located at

Unit 1 Norman Court,

Chelmsford,

CM1 1DR

  • Chelmsford Wine and Candy,

5 Tindal Square,

Chelmsford,

CM1 1EH

  • Matha Supermarked located at

40 New Street,

Chelmsford,

 CM1 1PH

  • Esso Admiral located at 

Broomfield Road,

Chelmsford,

CM1 1RY

  • Woodhall Express located at 

3 Woodhall Parade,

Chelmsford,

CM1 1BA

  • Simply Fresh, located at

1 and 2 Abercorn House,

Chelmsford,

CM3 3BT

  • BP Baddow Road located at

Baddow Road,

Chelmsford,

CM2 9QZ

  • PJ Food Stores located at,

2 Rittle Road,

Chelmsford,

3M1 3BX

What will happen if I don’t pay my Chelmsford City PCN within the 28-day limit?

If you fail to pay your Chelmsford City PCN within the 28-day limit you will be sent a charge certificate from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. The charge certificate increases your PCN fine by 50%. You should pay the charge certificate within 14 days as it cannot be appealed and ignoring the charge certificate may result in the filing of a court order (for recovery of debts) against you by the Chelmsford City Council.

So, when the charge certificate is also not paid within 14 days, you will receive a “Notice of Debt Registration” and a witness certificate from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. The unpaid amount will be treated as a debt with the Traffic Enforcement Centre at the Northampton County Court.

The court order for debt recovery enforces that the charge certificate amount must be paid in full within 21 days or it will have to sanction the use of additional powers to recover the money from your possession.

Can I Dispute A Chelmsford PCN with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute the decision of the Chelmsford City Council in your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. For this, you can use the Traffic Penalty Tribunal’s website by clicking this link 

You can watch this instructional video here to learn about your challenge process. It clearly explains how to use the online service offered by the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. On the Traffic Penalty Tribunal webpage, you will first have to select the type of PCN you were served by Chelmsford City Council(shown on the bottom part of the page) .

You will then be required to enter your Vehicle Registration Number, the reference number from the “Notice of Rejection” letter from the Chelmsford City Council, and your PCN number for which the appeal was rejected.

This challenge to an appeal dismissal by the Chelmsford City Council can only be made online. You can use the online service to challenge multiple “Notices of Rejection” simultaneously. You will require a valid email address to create an account on the Traffic Penalty Tribunal website. You have to attach a copy of your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” letter to your application by using the Traffic Penalty Tribunal’s online portal.

Scanned copies of evidence to strengthen your case such as a pay and display ticket or photographs of the scene can be added along with your explanation. The explanation of your case should be well worded and convince the tribunal of an error on the part of the Chelmsford City Council in adjudicating your case.

You will be able to contact the Traffic Penalty Tribunal adjudicator during the registration of your appeal. The result of your appeal will be communicated to you within 14-28 days of submission. If the adjudicator decides the case in your favour, the PCN will be cancelled by the Chelmsford City Council.

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question How Can I Challenge A Chelmsford PCN? You must remember to attach or upload material evidence supporting the reasons for your PCN challenge which can also include eyewitness accounts supporting your mitigating circumstances or video footage proving that you had parked within your designated space that day. You can also attach maps of road junctions or streets in Chelmsford City which fall along your daily route, to explain that the traffic contravention never occurred.

Citations

Bus Lane Contraventions (Penalty Charges, Adjudication and Enforcement) Regulations 2005

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