I can imagine how Victor Sawyer feels about the parking fine he received following a visit to the Primary Care Centre (Gazette Letters, September 17, “Anger at £70 fine for parking at clinic”).

The same thing happened to me and my husband last year.

I paid the fine and included a letter to explain exactly what had happened.

They took this to be an appeal (it wasn’t), and rejected it.

In short, this was a new system we hadn’t encountered before.

We believed we had been at the centre for two hours and paid with three £1 coins but received no receipt.

I found a security man inside the PCC and he couldn’t help us to get a receipt either.

He gave us a phone number to call at the hospital and we were assured that if we exited within half an hour we would not be fined.

We were fined.

It wasn’t at all clear that once you have been photographed entering the site at the barrier, the clock starts ticking until you are photographed exiting.

I explained this to the company issuing the fine, but this was ignored, unfairly we felt, though we weren’t surprised either.

This is simply a licence to print money for them.

It is a terrible system designed to confuse people when they are intent on getting to important health appointments.

I asked the company how many people had been caught out like this.

No answer was forthcoming but we can all assume it must happen regularly.

We much prefer a system with a timed ticket at the entrance barrier.

The same system once used at the General Hospital next door.

Simple to use and fairer for all.

Georgina Nicholls

Queen Anne Road, West Mersea