This blog answers the question “How Can I Challenge A PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council?” It is imperative for you to be aware of the traffic contravention codes enforced on different roads and junctions in Central Bedfordshire Council. This blog also explains how you can recover your impounded vehicle from the Bedfordshire Police Headquarters.

How Can I Challenge A PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council?

You can challenge a PCN served in Central Bedfordshire Council by composing a written appeal backed by material evidence such as maps, photographs, or eyewitness statements and sending it in by post to the council.. This appeal written by hand should mention the relevant traffic contravention according to the provisions of the Road Traffic Act 1988 or the Traffic Management Act 2004. After stating the contravention code, you can dispute the PCN by using the established grounds for contesting a Parking, Bus Lane or Moving Traffic PCN. 

Another quicker and more efficient (for attaching evidence) way for challenging a Central Bedfordshire PCN is by using the official website. If you have access to a personal computer or laptop, you can easily maintain a folder with photos and videos of your vehicle journeys as well as scanned copies of pay and display tickets. These can be instantly uploaded to the Central Bedfordshire online PCN appeals page to support the grounds for your appeal.

You can keep a list of Parking, Bus Lane and Moving Traffic contraventions (with traffic signs) with you in your vehicle or even paste it somewhere on your dashboard to help you focus on where you are going and to decrease the chances of making a wrong turn. 

It is essential for you to compile a strong appeals case before sending in your challenge so as to avoid being served a “Notice of Rejection of Representations”, which means the council has denied your PCN appeal. 

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 Central Bedfordshire Council?

You can appeal against a PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council 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 addressed to the council mentioning your PCN number and vehicle registration number. 

You can also include the text of the sections of the Traffic Management Act 2004 or the Road Traffic Act 1988 relating to your case.You should compile a PCN challenge by referring to the relevant contravention code and by listing down any mitigating circumstances which influenced your actions. This appeal should demonstrate your active mental presence in attempting to avoid the moving traffic or bus lane contravention.

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:

Central Bedfordshire Council,

PO Box 597,

Northampton,

NN4 7XN

You can also challenge your Central Bedfordshire PCN online by clicking here. On this webpage you need to enter your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number and click “”Search” to start your PCN challenge. . This 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 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 Central Bedfordshire 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 Central Bedfordshire Council website.

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

If the Central Bedfordshire 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.

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

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

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a Central Bedfordshire 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 14 days, you just have to pay £35. The PCN fine for a moving traffic PCN in Central Bedfordshire Council is £70. There is a 50% discount for paying it within 14 days, which reduces the fine to £35.

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 can I pay a PCN in Central Bedfordshire Council?

You can pay a PCN in Central Bedfordshire Council by using the postal service, by telephone, or online here

The Central Bedfordshire Council website provides an online payment service for PCN fines. You need to open this webpage to access the Penalty Charge Notice payments portal. Your PCN number and vehicle registration number have to be entered to initiate the payment process. In the next window, you will be required to provide your payment card details. The Central Bedfordshire Council accepts VisaCard, MasterCard, Maestro Card, DeltaCard, Electron Card, and Solo Card.

You can also pay on Central Bedfordshire Council’s automated payments hotline by dialling: 0330 088 5697. 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 Central Bedfordshire Council also accepts PCN fine payments by post. You need to send a check or postal order to “Central Bedfordshire 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:

Central Bedfordshire Council,

PO Box 597,

Northampton,

NN4 7XN

What Can I Do If My Vehicle has been towed away?

If your vehicle has been towed away by Central Bedfordshire Council you need to call 101 to ask the Bedfordshire Police about the matter. If your vehicle was towed away for violating your driving license rules, you should have received a form 3078 (seizure notice) by post. Your inquiry will be addressed by the Bedfordshire police staff and in case your vehicle has been towed away you will have to visit the Bedfordshire Police Headquarters to get it released.

Next, you will be required to verify 2 kinds of ID documents such as a passport and a driving licence at the vehicle pound. You could also use 2 other combinations of documents such as your original birth certificate and your vehicle registration certificate. You should also have the insurance certificate for your vehicle and your V5C vehicle registration certificate (with you) unless this has already been used as one of the 2 ID documents.

Vehicles are seized by the Bedfordshire Police under Section 165 A or the Road Traffic Act 1988 due to a violation of your driving license rules. You must remember to visit the vehicle pound within 7 days of the date mentioned on your form 3078. The amount of money you will need to unclamp your vehicle includes a £200 release fee and storage charges of £20 per day. So for example if your vehicle was towed away by a parking company 3 days ago, you will need (£20×3) + £200 = £260 to get it released from the vehicle pound. This vehicle release and storage charges are set under The Road Traffic Act 1998 (Retention and Disposal of Seized Motor Vehicles).

You should pay your Parking PCN online before collecting the vehicle from the pound at Bedfordshire Police Headquarters. But even if you just have £200 or £260 with you (for leaving your vehicle in the pound for up to 3 days), you can still pay the amount at the vehicle pound and claim your vehicle. It is more important to collect your vehicle from the Bedfordshire Police vehicle pound than to pay your PCN fine because storage fees of £20 are being added every day and your vehicle will no longer be in the vehicle pound after 14 days.

Your vehicle pound charges can vary so it is best to get it removed from there as soon as possible. For each week your vehicle is left in the pound you will have to pay £140 extra storage charges.

Once you contact the Bedfordshire Police by dialling 101 and tell them your vehicle registration number you will be guided to the Bedfordshire Police Headquarters for recovering your impounded vehicle.

You will have to make the payment to release your vehicle from the Bedfordshire Police Headquarters by visiting the location in person with at least £200 in cash or available as credit on your payment card. The Bedfordshire Police accepts Visa Card, Master Card, Maestro Card, and Solo Card for the payment of vehicle release and storage charges.

The Bedfordshire Police Headquarters is located at this address :

Woburn Road,

Kempston,

Bedford MK 43 9AX,

You can visit the Bedfordshire Police Headquarters at any time between 8:00 am and 8:00 pm from Monday to Friday. The Bedfordshire Police HQ is closed on weekends. Staff from the Bedfordshire police will be available at the pound to address your queries and for receiving the vehicle release charges.

You should have the 2 ID Documents, a copy of form 3078, your vehicle’s MOT certificate, and your vehicle registration certificate (if this is not your ID document).

If your vehicle has been towed away you need to go to the vehicle pound with a cash payment or payment card for payment of vehicle release charges and any vehicle storage expenses (incurred by the vehicle pound). Next, you need to pay the required charges and your vehicle is free. You must remember to recover your vehicle within 7 days from the vehicle pound. If you leave it there for more than 14 days the car might be scrapped or recycled.

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

If you fail to pay your Central Bedfordshire 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 Central Bedfordshire Council.

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 use additional powers to recover the money from your possession.

Can I Dispute A PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council with the Traffic Penalty Tribunal if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute the decision of the Central Bedfordshire 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 the Central Bedfordshire 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 Central Bedfordshire Council, and your PCN number for which the appeal was rejected.

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 Central Bedfordshire Council in adjudicating your case.

This challenge to an appeal dismissal by the Central Bedfordshire Council can be made online and also by writing an appeals letter to the Traffic Penalty Tribunal. This letter along with attached evidence documents such as statements from witnesses on the scene, maps or photographs explaining the traffic violation, needs to be sent to :

Traffic Penalty Tribunal.

Springfield House,

Water Lane,

Wilmslow,

Cheshire,

SK9 5BG

Your PCN challenge sent by mail should reach the Traffic Penalty Tribunal within 28 days of receiving your Notification of Rejection of Representations from Central Bedfordshire Council.

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 Central Bedfordshire Council.

You can contact the Traffic Penalty Tribunal for extra information on this telephone number : 01625 445555

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question “How Can I Challenge A PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council?” You can challenge a PCN from the Central Bedfordshire Council by mentioning mitigating circumstances with proper evidence documents such as a medical certificate from a certified General Practitioner. All reasons for a PCN challenge must be supported with material evidence otherwise they will not be entertained.   

Citations

Bedfordshire Police Seized Vehicles

 Section 165 A or the Road Traffic Act 1988 

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