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Mum fined for staying over 3 hours in Asda car park as she fed her baby

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A first time mum has been issued with a £70 fine after feeding her baby in an Asda car park.

Rosie Hayes from Brighton overstayed the car park’s three-hour time limit when she stopped to feed her five-week-old daughter, Ella, after finishing her shopping. The thirty-four-old mum says she spent over £150 on food, petrol and baby items before leaving the store.

Overstayed time limit

During her visit, Rosie struggled to find a suitable place to breastfeed Ella. As her home is around 30 minutes away she decided to feed her hungry baby in the car before she set off. This meant she was 26 minutes late in leaving the car park.

Appeal

“I wasn’t annoyed when I first got the ticket, but I assumed once I explained the situation and appealed they would cancel the fine,” the stay-at-home mum told ITV News. “Anyone who looked at the CCTV could have seen what I was doing – but the parking company responded saying I still had to pay.

“As a new mum you are sleep-deprived and are just trying to look after your baby. Breastfeeding mothers are given a really hard time and I would have thought a big organisation like Asda would have been more understanding.”

Feeding baby

Smart Parking, the company that oversees the car park at Asda’s Brighton Marina supermarket, rejected Rosie’s appeal and told her she had to pay up. “When you have a young child, everything can take a long time which was why it took me so long to get the shopping sorted,” Rosie said. “By the time I got everything done Ella was hungry again and it would have taken at least 30 or 45 minutes to get home and get the shopping in so I knew I needed to start feeding her. Newborn babies take quite a long time to feed, so once I started feeding her I could hardly stop.

“Only 20 per cent of mothers in Brighton breastfeed and I can see why, because it is difficult. It would be good to have had the support of Asda.”

Fine cancelled

However, since the case has been highlighted, Smart Parking have reconsidered the fine and cancelled it.

A spokeperson for Smart Parking commented: “The car park at the marina is very busy, so is only available for Asda customers who receive 3 hours of free parking. At the car park there are 24 signs that clearly highlight its terms and conditions of use.

“In the case of Ms Hayes she overstayed the free parking period, so correctly received a charge. However, as an act of goodwill we have now decided to cancel her charge.”

An Asda spokesperson said: “We’re sorry for any upset caused and the charge has been cancelled.”

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About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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