AN NHS worker was left fuming after being slapped with an "unfair" £170 parking charge for a town centre pit stop of just mere minutes.
Linsey Ellis said the parking sign at the site tells drivers that they can park for up to 90 minutes for free.
But Miss Ellis claimed she was wrongly issued a notice after she parked at the car park in Nottingham twice on the same day for no longer than 15 minutes each time.
She told Nottinghamshire Live she didn't receive an initial letter notifying her of the charge, which has now risen to £170.
And Miss Ellis said: "I 100 per cent haven't overrun the 90 minutes and didn't receive the first letter, so it just is all a bit mad!
"I just felt like it was really unfair."
Explaining what happened, she said: "I had that week off and in the morning at 8.45am I went to Greggs to get a coffee for my mum before I picked her up.
"We had gone out for the morning and then after that I had some clothes that I'd sorted out during lockdown and I wanted to take them to the charity shop, so I thought now I will drop my mum off, I'll pick up my clothes and take them to the charity shop.
"So I'd gone in that car park twice but I bet each time I wasn't there 15 minutes each time.
"Some car parks say you can't return but it doesn't say that at this car park."
She has now been weighing up whether or not to pay the fine to avoid the stress of potentially being taken to court.
She said: "Now I am kind of thinking 'no, I don't want to pay it, but is it less stressful just to pay it?
"Because I am being told if I don't pay it within two days 'you will get letters from our solicitors about a court date'," the QMC worker said.
She said the parking charge was dated on August 23 - but that she didn't receive a letter until the end of last week.
The 38-year-old said she was told her parking notice had risen to £170 after she was accused of failing to respond to a first letter from Smart Parking LTD, which she said never came through the post in the first place.
"The letter said I had not answered a previous letter so the fine had gone up to £170 and if I didn't pay it within seven days then they'd take me to court," she said.
"They said that I overstayed the free amount of time."
Independent councillor Richard Robinson, who represents Kimberley on Broxtowe Borough Council, has taken up her case.
He said he has already successfully appealed parking charges for two people, helping them overturn their fines.
Councillor Robinson said: "I've contacted this company on numerous occasions but I think that they realise that people are onto them now - it's a total scam.
"It's happening a lot."
And just yesterday, a family whose five cars won't fit on their drive have complained about having to pay parking fees.
Angela Hammond and her family say their council won't allow them to buy a parking permit as they already have off-road parking.
And an NHS worker slammed a “jobsworth” parking warden for slapping her with a ticket as she was giving dozens of Covid and flu jabs.
Sandra Chapman, 54, was furious to find she had been given a fine for parking outside of the lines of a marked bay when she returned to her Audi in Devon.