If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.
Car clamp nightmare
A YOUNG carer from Salisbury took a stand against a wheel clamper in an ordeal lasting 30 hours.
Jessica Davey, 22, barricaded herself in her car outside her home at Wesley Court, Harnham, after her vehicle was clamped in the early hours of Monday morning – despite displaying a valid parking permit.
She was worried her Renault Clio would be towed away and she wouldn’t be able to afford to get it back.
For much of the time she was sitting in her car, Miss Davey, who works at Winterbourne Care Home, in London Road, was being watched by clamper Anthony Brindley who was demanding £110 to take the clamp off.
Miss Davey’s pleas for help were ignored by the housing association and by the police, who said that, because it was a civil matter, they were unable to assist her.
However when her boyfriend Simon Baker, 23, tried to take the clamp off and free her car, he was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage and taken to Salisbury police station for questioning.
He was later released without charge.
Miss Davey says she had displayed her permit on the dashboard of the car when she parked it in the car park belonging to Sanctuary Shaftesbury housing association.
She discovered the clamp when she tried to go to work at 7am.
Refusing to pay the hefty fine, she decided to shut herself in her car in protest. “I couldn’t afford to pay him and I didn’t see why I should so I decided to stay with my car until he took it off so he couldn’t tow it away,” she said.
“If he did, the £250 to get it back is probably more than the car is worth.”
“I couldn’t get to work because of this and, as I’m a carer, it affects other people if I’m not there.”
Miss Davey sat in her car all day on Monday and, being unable to contact Mr Brindley on Tuesday morning, took the clamp off herself on Tuesday lunchtime – 30 hours after she first discovered her car was immobilised.
She said: “I can’t wait to get back to work. I was getting a bit fed up of sitting in my car, it was getting cold.”
Mr Brindley said he clamped Miss Davey’s car because the permit wasn’t stuck to her windscreen.
“The parking permit was not displayed on the window.
“It is the same size as a tax disc so it can easily be displayed in the windscreen,” he said.
“We deal with so many car parks around Salisbury it is impossible to remember which cars are supposed to be parked there.
“It’s our job to immobilise vehicles which are not displaying a valid parking permit and the release fee is set as such because of our expenses.”