Railway station parking tickets

Almost all railway stations have an on-site car park for commuters to use, and they almost certainly charge for parking. Most railway operators use a private parking firm to operate their scheme, and issue parking tickets to cars not parked according to their rules.

Interestingly, railway car parks aren’t considered ‘relevant land’ under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (POFA) and are instead covered under railway byelaws. By not being covered by PoFA, this has several implications related to keeper liability, wheel clamping, and appeals.

Keeper liability is the concept that the registered keeper can be held liable for a ticket issued to their car if they cannot or do not name the driver at the time of the incident. Since PoFA does not apply at railway car parks, no such liability exists. When a ticket needs to be issued at a railway car park, the company will write to the keeper of the vehicle since they won’t know the details of the driver. As such, if the keeper declares themselves not to be the driver (and they do not have any legal or moral responsibility to do so), the parking company cannot enforce the ticket.

PoFA also outlawed the use of wheel clamps for enforcing parking tickets. Where PoFA does not exist, such as railways, clamping is still allowed. However, this is not thought to be a widely used practice any more.

Also, since PoFA does not apply, there is no requirement for the independent appeals service to apply (POPLA). This means any appeal would be heard by the parking company themselves; which would quite clearly not be, or give the impression, that it is offering an impartial judgement.

How to fight railway station parking tickets? See our guide on how to handle these – link

IMPORTANT – if you were to receive a parking ticket in a railway car park and there is any mention of the Protection of Freedoms Act or keeper liability, this should raise a red flag. It is quite clearly set out in law that it is NOT relevant land, and therefore cannot apply. If they knowingly and falsely were to claim this, then that could be considered fraud under the Fraud Act. If you do see this, then you should make a formal complaint to the police.

If your ticket is correctly issued as a byelaw parking ticket, then do have a look at our guide to these sort of tickets here.