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Wednesday, 29 July 2015

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A not-so welcome sign

SIR – Please find below a letter sent to Wendy Mirehouse, contract manager, ACPOA, Whitehaven on June 24.

Spot the sign: A tourist and family were left stranded in Whitehaven after missing it hidden behind the scaffolding

Dear Madam, Last Monday we took a day trip with our young children to the Isle of Man on the preserved ship Balmoral. On finding most car parks in Whitehaven were maximum three-hour parking time, we settled in your car park. On returning to the car park after the trip at 10pm, we found ourselves, along with a dozen other people, locked out of the car park. Neither we, nor the Police, were able to contact anyone at ACPOA, so we made our way in a shared taxi (£24 each) to our B&B in Ravenglass.

After carrying out our planned arrangements for the following morning, I returned to Whitehaven by train to recover our car. I had to pay more than double what we had planned to recover the car, because of the unwanted overnight stay.

I had a good look around but could find no notice about the car park early closure time. Someone pointed out a sign above the entrance. I hadn’t seen this when we drove in as it is above my line of sight and was obscured by scaffolding.

I would like to suggest that, really, notices about the unusually early closure time should be prominently displayed around the interior of the car park, especially next to the pay stations.

George FLETCHER & Jane ADAMS and children

Windermere Road,


Celia McKenzie, chief executive of Whitehaven Harbour Commissioners, who own the multi-storey car park, said the company had been aware of the problem and have since acted on it. The scaffolding has now been removed and there is a prominent new sign displaying opening and closing times.


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