Since announcing the details of this year’s car park permit scheme, we have received a number of comments and suggestions for consideration going forward. We have also received a number of questions, many of which were covered in the original communication and others that are answered below.
Why has the permit fee increased?
Managing and maintaining car parks requires significant investment. For example, the cost of providing just one car parking space is circa £3000. One day of thermoplastic line painting costs in excess of £1000. The aggregate required to strengthen the surface of the Clarice Cliff overflow car park last winter cost £4000. The resource needed to patrol car parks and manage the issue of visitor permits was absorbed last year.
The income from the permit fee makes a contribution to these costs as well as permit production, postage and maintenance of the permit management system.
The University is committed to green travel and has made the pledge that any surplus will be ring fenced to contribute to sustainable travel initiatives such as the inter-site shuttle bus and cycle training.
Why are students paying less than staff and why is there no reduction for part time staff?
The permit fee for all staff, while not a weekly charge, is in the region of £1 per week. If the University were to charge for parking using a pay and display system then for example, with a minimum charge of £1 per day, staff would be paying significantly more. It was decided that £50 was appropriate for all staff.
There was a very strong argument for students to pay less given the length of the academic year for most students and the level of fees already being paid to study.
Is there support and training for those who want to start cycling to the University?
The University supports a number of initiatives to help those wanting to make sustainable travel choices, including personal journey planning. Cyclescheme is available for those wanting to purchase a bicycle and regular training and cycle maintenance events are held throughout the year. Consideration is also being given to offering more cycle training. Please visit www.staffs.ac.uk/sustainstaffs for more details or contact Adam Van Winsum, Environmental Manager.
Are Parking Charge Notices enforceable?
Parking charge notices are issued by members of the University Campus Services Team when a vehicle is parked on campus not in accordance with the advertised parking conditions. Parking charge notices are enforceable but any individual wishing to appeal a charge notice can do so but if an appeal is not upheld then the charge will be pursued. Parking charge notices should not be ignored as this will eventually result in escalation to solicitors and ultimately to the courts.
What happens if I live within the exclusion zone but I do need to drive to campus?
Anyone whose permit application is moderated because their address is within the exclusion zone has the opportunity to present exceptional circumstances for consideration. In most cases, the moderation is lifted and the application is successful.
Are there any more spaces than last year?
We have been able to identify 26 additional spaces on the Leek Rd campus at Stoke over the summer and have an additional 45 in the pipeline by working with our neighbours at the Rep Theatre. In addition, we have the full number of spaces available from the start of the semester rather than a phased handover from the contractor which occurred last year.
As plans progresses for delivery of the Estates Strategy we are working hard to understand what the demand for parking in Stoke may be when students and staff move from Stafford and then how we can meet this challenge.
Do staff based at Shrewsbury have to purchase a permit?
Staff based off campus who make very few and infrequent visits to campus can obtain a visitor permit on those occasions.
What income did the University receive and how was this allocated?
There was a date error in the original communication which is corrected below. In the period January 2013 to July 2014, the University received approximately £40,000 from a combination of parking charges and permit income after costs, which was allocated as a contribution to the running costs of the free to user, inter-site shuttle bus service.
There have been a number of questions/proposals raised which, although not incorporated in this year’s scheme, are being considered as part of the future strategy. These include items such as:
• Charges linked to car emissions
• Charges linked to salary
• Charges linked to actual usage (e.g. pay and display)
• A system for allowing monthly deductions from salary to also include the potential for a salary sacrifice scheme (possible tax and national insurance savings).
In considering these, the practicalities and cost of implementation have to be considered alongside the desirability. The intention is to develop a system which provides the best solution to all the objectives but it is accepted that this will not meet all users’ expectations.
Original update sent Friday 5 September
In January 2013 working in partnership with District Enforcement, the University introduced car park management procedures to address very serious health and safety concerns that were a consequence of indiscriminate parking on campus at Stoke and Stafford. The University recognises that this was a direct result of having too few parking spaces for demand but due to planning constraints and our commitment to sustainable travel and carbon reduction, it was unable to provide more spaces than the current number. The solution was to look at ways of reducing car travel while managing the spaces that were available.
Following implementation of parking conditions in January 2013, a car park permit scheme was launched in November 2013 to make sure that only those authorised to park on campus had access to the University car parking spaces. This included an exclusion zone whereby students and colleagues living within 1 mile of campus would not be eligible for a parking permit, except for those with exceptional circumstances. The introductory administration fee for a permit that would be valid until 30th September 2014 was set at £20 for all. This was to cover the administration of the system, printing and postal costs while the resource within Campus and Commercial Services necessary to deal with applications, enquiries and car park enforcement was absorbed by the service.
The car park management procedures and permit scheme have been very successful in making sure that our car parks and landscaped areas have remained safe and accessible at all times. In the period January 2013 to July 2014, the University received approximately £40,000 from a combination of parking charges and permit income after costs, which was allocated as a contribution to the running costs of the free to user, inter-site shuttle bus service which was a very popular addition to services offered to students and colleagues in 2013/14 and which the University was able to improve with the addition of extra buses during periods of high demand.
Following a full review of car park management on campus and feedback from students and colleagues the following has been agreed for the academic year 2014/15:
• The permit exclusion zone will be extended to 2 miles. Exceptional circumstances will be considered upon presentation.
• The permit fee for students will be £35 for a single vehicle.
• The permit fee for staff will be £50 for up to 2 vehicles.
• No cap will be placed on permit numbers.
• Spaces remain on a first come, first served basis.
• Visitor spaces can be reserved on request with at least 24 hours’ notice.
• After costs, any income from parking management will be ring fenced for investment in sustainable travel and improvements to the car parking infrastructure.
The University is committed to sustainable travel and as such is undergoing a full review of the Green Travel Plan, in conjunction with UniQ partners and stakeholders and to help inform the travel strategy related to the impact of the Estates Strategy from 2016.
Included in this review is a commitment to engage with students and staff on developments for car park management for 2015 and beyond. This will include a travel survey and consultation on proposals for charging, implementing car park zones, long and short stay areas as well as use of technology and further improvements to the permit scheme. This may include salary sacrifice for permits and a review of how fees are determined for example by grade, FTE or vehicle emissions. More information will be circulated from October 2014.
All queries, comments and suggestions are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org
The following information includes details of how to apply for a 2014/15 parking permit.
Car Park Management
Parking conditions apply and are as advertised throughout the car parks.
Permits are required in all University car parks at Stoke-on-Trent and Stafford Campuses. If for any reason permits are suspended, notices are put up at the entrances to the car parks. This could be to support special events such as Open Days or Enrolment.
Students and Staff Parking
Students and staff need to display a University parking permit to park on campus. In addition parking in accessible spaces are required to display a valid blue badge or a University temporary accessible permit. For help please contact the Student Enabling Centre or Personnel Services.
1. To apply for a permit
To apply for a permit takes approximately 10 minutes, by visiting the link below. Permits are posted to the applicant’s address, once payment has been confirmed. Payment may be made by credit or debit card online, or by cheque or bank transfer (please note that paying by cheque or bank transfer will delay the confirmation and production of your permit). The annual fee is £50.00 for staff and £35.00 for students. There is no reduction if you apply part way through the year – the fee covers the production of the permit and administration costs with any surpluses being invested in car parking, shuttle services and other sustainable transport initiatives. It is not refundable.
You will need to use the link below:
To complete an application you will need the following information:
Student ID Number (This is numeric – eg 12345678)
Term-Time Post Code (Where you will be living while at University, which is the address you will have supplied during enrolment) – eg ST5 1NS
Staff ID Number (Can be found on payslip – five digits or if you are not sure contact payroll) – eg 73944
Home Post Code or wherever you reside while working at the University.
The Application Process
You will firstly be required to register an account, from which all correspondence and future amendments or applications will be managed. Once the account is created, you will link that account to your staff/student details (as shown above). Please note that only one account per applicant will be permitted.
Please complete the data entry as requested through to the end of the application process. Your application will then be checked against current university eligibility rules and you will be informed of which areas your permit will be valid to use.
If the system shows that you are not eligible for a permit, or you have limitations imposed that you would like removing, you will be able to request a review of your application.
For example, if you live within a two mile radius of the University, you would not be permitted to have a parking permit, unless you have a disability or in other very exceptional circumstances. Similarly, if you live over 150 miles away from campus, the University would not expect a student or employee to commute over 150 miles on a daily basis, but on a part-time basis this may be feasible, say once or twice a week.
In these circumstances, you may raise a request for review within the application portal itself which would be reviewed by Campus and Commercial services. You would be notified of the outcome via your permit account, as well as checking for email notifications being sent to you upon any update.
Once you accept the details and permit validity, you may then proceed immediately to the payment stage of the application.
Once the payment process is completed, it may take several days for these details to be verified and accepted. Card payments will be verified and cleared faster than other forms of payment, which you should bear in mind if applying during the period the permit is valid for. Upon confirmation of payment, your permit will be printed and despatched to your home address. (It is important when completing your address that you make sure the address supplied includes your correct house name and/or number. It is your responsibility to make sure your full postal address is correct and your car registration details are input correctly.)
Note that permits applied and paid for in advance of October 2014 will not become valid until 1st October. Therefore, they will be dispatched by post closer to the end of September, but so that they will arrive in sufficient time to be displayed in your vehicle before that date. Upon successful receipt of your payment you will be emailed a proof of permit eligibility that may be printed and clearly displayed in your vehicle for a maximum period of 3 days whilst you wait for your permit to arrive in the post. After this time, only full valid permits will be acceptable.
Students are allowed to register one vehicle and will receive a counterfoil that can be handed into the relevant campus lodge to receive a temporary visitor permit for any alternative vehicle. Please note that your Student ID card must also be presented at the time of surrendering your counterfoil.
Staff are allowed to register two vehicles and would receive a counterfoil that can be handed into the relevant campus lodge to receive a temporary visitor permit for any alternative vehicle. Please note that your Staff ID card must also be presented at the time of surrendering your counterfoil.
Motorcycles do not require a permit, but must be registered in the same way as for cars and must also be parked in a motorcycle bay.
2. Visitor Permits
Visitor permits are available from the Campus Lodges at Stoke and Stafford, together with the receptions in Brindley, Cadman and Science Centre at Stoke and Health Sciences reception at Blackheath Lane.
If you need to request a visitor permit/reserved parking in advance of their arrival, please email email@example.com and this will be processed for you.
3. Replacement or Amended Permits
To get a replacement permit, or amend your permit if you have made an error, please log into your permit account and apply for a replacement there:
Click to open the web page.
The fee is £5.00.
While you are waiting for your permit to arrive you can use your counterfoil to get a temporary visitor permit for your new car. These are available from the relevant campus lodge and Cadman and Science Centre Receptions. Note that you will also need to show your relevant ID card at the same time as surrendering your counterfoil.
All previously used permits must be returned to Campus and Commercial Services in B001, Cadman Building in Stoke once your new permit has been received. It is not possible to transfer a permit from one vehicle to another, as the registration number will not match the new vehicle.
4. Contractor Parking
Anyone who is contracted to provide services on a regular basis to the University can apply for a contractor permit by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. Parking Charge Notices
Parking Charge Notices would be issued to any vehicle that satisfies any of the advertised conditions laid down by the University. Signage is displayed within car parks showing the parking conditions that apply at all times. These are as follows:
Not Displaying a valid Staffordshire University Parking Permit
Parked in a Disabled Driver Bay without displaying a valid Blue Badge or University Disabled Bay Permit
Parked in a restricted use parking area or obstructing any emergency exit or route
Not parked wholly within a marked bay
Parked on any yellow line or cross hatched area
Parked so as to cause any obstruction or inconvenience to others or otherwise block any other vehicle’s path.
A PCN would be issued at a cost of £70 per day per incident and would be payable by the driver of any vehicle. The charge would be reduced to £35.00 if paid within 14 days of the charge notice date. Charges remaining unpaid after 28 days of notice would be subject to an additional £60 to cover debt recovery costs.
Anyone accessing a car park and parking a vehicle on a University car park has accepted the conditions as laid down on the signage displayed. The parking terms apply in all campus areas at all times. All vehicles are parked entirely at owner’s risk.
Once a PCN has been issued you have 14 days to appeal in writing direct to:
District Enforcement Limited
PO Box 3487
Your appeal would be reviewed and either accepted or rejected. If your appeal was accepted the PCN would be cancelled. If your appeal was rejected you could take your case to IPC (Independent Parking Committee) to see whether they accept or reject your challenge. If your case was rejected you would still be liable for the outstanding charges.
If your PCN was still not settled at this point, your case would be sent to debt recovery through solicitors and then onto court.