A MOTORIST has been slapped with a £100 fine for parking overnight on the Radcliffe Metrolink car park – despite the facility’s website describing it as “free”.

Ian Callaghan, aged 57, of Canalside, Radcliffe, parked in the Metrolink car park on the evening of December 5 when he went for dinner in Bury with wife Diane and 80-year-old mum Margaret Atkinson.

Afterwards they decided to have a drink at the New Swan pub in Radcliffe and so Mr Callaghan left his car overnight – checking the Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) website which said the car park was free and gave no more details.

Due to the darkness, Mr Callaghan did not spot signs stating the facility is only free during the hours the tram is running.

On returning to his car the following day he found a £100 penalty notice – reduced to £60 if paid within two weeks – had been issued at 5.45am.

Mr Callaghan said: “I believed it to be free parking because that is what it says on the website – on the official Transport for Greater Manchester page it does not say anything about this only being during the hours the Metrolink runs.

“It is ridiculous – I was not deliberately trying to park somewhere I was not allowed to park and I will let them take me to the small claims court to fight this.

“I just want to warn other people so no one else gets caught out.”

A TfGM spokesman said: “Parking regulations exist at a number of park and ride sites, including Radcliffe, to ensure that the car parks are used as safely and as efficiently as possible.

“Signs are clearly displayed on all these sites to advise users on the regulations and it is the user’s responsibility to ensure that they are abided by.”