This blog answers the question “How Can I Challenge my City of London PCN?”The blog explains how you can challenge your Penalty Charge Notice with the “City of London Corporation” and then further dispute it with the London Tribunals. Your City of London PCN should preferably be challenged within 14 days.

How Can I Challenge my City of London PCN?

You should have information regarding your parking permits and paid PCN fines stored on your computer for easy access. This simplifies the process of formulating a PCN challenge with relevant evidence. If you wish to dispute your PCN online, you need to visit the City of London Corporation website and enter your PCN Number and Vehicle Registration Number to access CCTV evidence from the scene.

You can even take a couple of days to properly analyse the CCTV footage and recall the exact circumstances in which you committed the alleged traffic violation. The wording of your formal representation to your PCN makes a big difference to the outcome of your challenge. If you can mention the relevant traffic contravention from the Traffic Management Act 2004 along with a valid and genuine reason for your error, you can easily get the PCN cancelled. 

If you challenge your Penalty Charge Notice by post, you should make sure you allow 4 to 6 days for the letter to reach the City of London Corporation. You will end up with a charge certificate from Transport for London if your postal PCN appeal reaches the council after the 28th day.

PCNs issued from the City of London Corporation are fines worth £130 and should be challenged unless your actions were guided by a spontaneous reason. So you should not challenge a PCN given in a situation where you knew that you were genuinely distracted from driving that day or had breached a bus lane because you were getting late for work.  

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 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.

Which parking restrictions apply to the City of London as a CPZ?

The following parking restrictions apply to the City of London as a Controlled Parking Zone:

  • The kerbside area is off limits under yellow line restrictions
  • Parking on double yellow lines is prohibited in the zone
  • Moving traffic contraventions are enforced throughout the zone
  • Suspended parking bays are off limits 
  • Parking next to a dropped kerb or a raised carriageway

The City of London is a Controlled Parking Zone from 7 am to 7pm from Monday to Friday and from 7 am to 11 am on Saturdays.

What are the parking charges for the Riddlesdown (Site of Specific Scientific Interest) car park?

The City of London Corporation manages Riddlesdown sanctuary and the Coulsdon Commons. Parking charges for the Riddlesdown SSSI car park are just £3 a day from Monday to Friday. If you are parking for just 2 hours, you have to pay £1.5. The same charges apply to parking on weekends and bank holidays.

Season tickets (parking permits) to Riddlesdown (SSSI) can be bought online from RingGo starting from January each year. These tickets are offered in yearly and monthly packages. You can buy a yearly season ticket to Riddlesdown for £180. This enables you to park in the sanctuary zone for a year.

A monthly season ticket to Riddlesdown just costs £16 and enables you to park in Riddlesdown for a month. You can also purchase a season ticket for 2 vehicles together. The yearly season ticket for 2 vehicles costs £200 and the monthly season ticket (for 2 vehicles) costs £18. You need to register on the RingGo website before you can purchase these season tickets.

The payment for these season ticket packages to Riddlesdown car park can be made through credit or debit card or by using the RingGo app.

The Riddlesdown National Reserve Sanctuary is 130 years old.

Your money for the parking permits at Riddlesdown is used improving and caring for the sanctuary by :

  • Funding the conservation of rare animals and wildlife species under threat of extinction
  • Funding supplies used by volunteers and for financing educational events
  • Spending on maintaining the facilities used by visitors to Riddlesdown
  • Clearing and recycling trash from the sanctuary and preserving the ecosystem of the countryside

How can I pay my City of London PCN fine?

You can pay your City of London PCN through the mail, by telephone, or online here

If you want to pay online, you must enter your PCN number, vehicle registration number, and payment card details. The City of London Corporation website provides an online payments service for PCN fines. You need to open this webpage to access the Penalty Charge Notice portal.

 You can also pay on the City of London council’s automated payments hotline by dialing: 0300 456 0632. 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 City of London Corporation also accepts PCN fine payments by post. You need to send a check, postal order, or bank draft payable to “Corporation of the City of London”. 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:

Parking Services,

Guildhall,

PO Box 270,

London,

EC2P 2EJ

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

The 3 kinds of PCNs served in the City of London Corporation all have charges of £130 if paid within 28 days. A lower level parking PCN fine is £50 lesser than a higher level parking PCN, at £80.

The Penalty Charge Notice fine for a City of London Parking PCN is set at £130 for a higher level traffic violation and £80 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 £65. Similarly, if you pay your lower level parking PCN within 21 days, you just have to pay £40.

If you pay a Bus Lane PCN within 28 days, you will be charged £130 and if you pay it within 21 days, you just have to pay £65. The PCN fine for a moving traffic PCN in the City of London Corporation is £130. There is a 50% discount for paying it within 14 days, which reduces the fine to £65.

What steps do I have to follow to challenge my City of London PCN?

You can challenge a City of London PCN by post or by using the council’s online service.

The first stage of challenging a City of London PCN is an informal appeal. The informal challenge only applies to Parking PCN served by a CEO or a CCTV Bus Lane PCN. You can choose to make this informal appeal online or by post.  You must mention your PCN Number, Vehicle Registration Number, and the reasons for your appeal in the letter. 

 The reply to your informal appeal will be sent by the City of London Corporation through email so you should check all your email folders including junk mail for responses or preferably add the email address to your contacts.

After the informal appeal, the council will send you a “Notice to Owner” and you will be given 14 days to make a formal appeal (these are the 14 days from getting the PCN).

For a CCTV Parking PCN, CCTV Bus Lane PCN, or moving traffic PCN you will make a formal representation, after receiving your Enforcement Notice or Notice to Owner (NTO).

The formal representation can be made online by clicking here. On this webpage, you need to enter your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number to start your PCN challenge. Evidence documents can be uploaded online..

If you are appealing your PCN by post, you need to mention your PCN number and Vehicle Registration number in your letter. It should contain a logical explanation of the facts of your case and an acceptable rebuttal of the charges put forward by the City of London Corporation. Your PCN challenge needs to be sent to the following address :

Parking Services,

Guildhall,

PO Box 270,

London,

EC2P 2EJ

You need to view CCTV footage of your traffic contravention before deciding to contest the case put forward provided by the City of London. You must remember not to attempt to pay your PCN fine if you have chosen to appeal it. Paying the PCN will forfeit your chance for an appeal.

What happens if I don’t pay my City of London PCN within 28 days?

If you don’t pay your City of London PCN within 28 days, you will be issued a charge certificate by Transport for London. The charge certificate will increase your PCN fine amount to £195 or £120. If this charge certificate is not paid or appealed within 14 days, you will receive a “Notice of Debt Registration” and a witness certificate from Transport for London.

The unpaid charge certificate amount will be considered as debt by the Traffic Enforcement Centre at the Northampton County Court. The “Notice of Debt Registration” enforces that the charge certificate must be paid within the next 21 days. 

After 21 days, the Northampton County Court will use its legal powers to recover the debt from your possession.

Can I dispute a City of London PCN with the London Tribunals if the council dismisses my appeal?

Yes, you can dispute a City of London PCN with the Traffic Adjudicators at London Tribunals within 28 days of getting your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” from the council. You have to fill in the form provided to you with the Notice of Rejection and mail it to this postal address:

London Tribunals,

PO Box 10598,

Nottingham,

NG6 6DR

 You can also choose to dispute the “Notice of Rejection” from your council with the London Tribunals online by clicking on the “Access the Appellants Portal” button on this webpage. All you will be required to do is simply enter your Vehicle Registration Number, PCN number, and the reference number or code from your “Notice of Rejection of Representations” letter.

You can attach copies of evidence documents online to back up your appeal against the decision of the City of London Corporation. Such evidence may also include a signed and dated written statement describing what happened on the scene according to the viewpoint of an onlooker or witness.

London Tribunals will notify both you and the City of London Corporation of the hearing date. If the council contests your appeal, it will provide you with a copy of its application along with the evidence sent by it to the Traffic Adjudicators at London Tribunals. In case the independent parking and traffic adjudicator decides the case in your favour, the City of London council will promptly withdraw the PCN.

If the PCN is cancelled at this stage, you will have to pay nothing. If the London Tribunals decide the case in the council’s favour, you will be given another 28 days to pay the PCN fine.

Conclusion

This blog post addressed the question “How can I challenge a City of London PCN?” For challenging a City of London PCN, you need to understand the traffic contraventions applicable to bus lane entry and parking zones and be aware of the established grounds for making a successful appeal to the council. Some traffic contraventions you need to be aware of have been mentioned in this blog and you can use them to compose your City of London PCN appeal. These grounds for your challenge must be backed by some material evidence from the scene.

What was missing from this post which could have made it better?