Woman warns drivers of common overnight car park mistake that cost her £125

Parking fines could cost drivers a lot of money if they're not careful enough.

But no matter how vigilant motorists could be at reading signs, sometimes it's just unlucky.

Now one woman spoke out after making a "mistake" in her city centre which cost her an absolute fortune.

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Dianne Bourne said her car got locked in a multi-storey parking lot as she didn't leave before the 11:30pm closing time.

There was a small sign informing her that Piccadilly Gardens car park in Manchester would reopen at 5:30am.

Since she needed to get home, Dianne was forced to fork some cash on a cab and train journey.

According to Manchester Evening News, there is a poster which welcomes people to Piccadilly Gardens car park.

The sign reminds drivers to park up and pay before they walk away.

Dianne used the parking lot to cover the Eurovision Song Contest a few weekends ago.

She parked in the multi-storey car park as she knew the location and that she would be walking back after midnight.

The car park costs £20.20 for six hours, but Dianne chose to pay £25.50 to park her car for 24 hours.

There was an out-of-hours number on the wall to allow them access to the car park, but no one reportedly picked up.

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Due to the disruption from rail strikes and expensive hotel rooms, Dianne had to book a £85 taxi home.

She said: "I then had to get a £15 train back to Manchester the following morning, with my face contorted into a twitching, bitter grimace the whole way.

"So that's £100 I shelled out, on top of the £25.50 charge for the parking itself.

"It was a costly mistake – and one I don't want others to make. Yes, it was entirely my fault in not seeing the signs, but I can see how easily this can happen and I wonder exactly how many others fall foul of this."

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After contacting the local council, Dianne found it was the only council-owned car park in Manchester city centre which closes overnight.

It said there was "adequate signage" in the car park to let drivers know that it closes overnight, something which has been disputed in the past.

A spokesperson for Manchester City Council said: "In the past there have been concerns raised around anti-social behaviour taking place at this car park late at night and early in the morning.

"As a result the decision was taken to secure the building overnight to act as a deterrent. This has been the case for several years now.

"The Council offers the option for a motorist to pay for 24 hours of parking as the destination is popular for people visiting the city who may wish to leave their car overnight if they are staying in a hotel or nearby accommodation.

"There is however clear signage near payment points as well as at the exits displaying the opening and closing times of the car park."

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