A WOMAN who spent cash at a retail park has been left £60 down after she nipped across the street to Matalan - which is not covered despite being a 30-second walk away.

Stephanie Thompson was issued a fine earlier this month while parking at Greyhound Retail Park, in Sutton Road, Southend.

Stephanie, 64, had spent money at Lidl and Pound Stretcher, but was handed the fine for “leaving the retail park site” to shop at Matalan.

In a letter from UK Parking Control, seen by the Echo, parking bosses insisted Matalan is not part of the retail park, despite its address being listed as “Greyhound Retail Park”.

Stephanie, from Southend, has now insisted she will not shop at the retail park again despite years of loyal service.

She said: “I was so fuming. I have been going to the retail park for years since it opened it the 80s.

“I saw the attendant walking around but I hadn’t done anything wrong so I would have never dreamt I would get a ticket when I have never had one since I start driving in 1976!

“Why would you want to start your car and cause more congestion in the area to go from one car park to another within the same retail park.”

Stephanie initially appealed the fine, but a response stated Matalan was not part of the retail park and she could be liable for a £100 fine if she continued with the appeal.

The car park does not have an ANPR system, and the ticket was dished out physically by a parking warden.

Stephanie added: “I saw the attendant walking around and if he saw me walk to Matalan and that wasn’t allowed, he could’ve let me know. “The signage at the entrance lists all the shops within the park and includes Matalan.

“This has been a very stressful experience for me and I will never shop there again after this.”

“To stop this happening to others,a notice should be displayed advising that the car park by Starbucks is not for Matalan customers.

“I am concerned about going to Popla (Parking on Public Land Appeal) to make an appeal as I do not want to have to pay £100, so I have no option but to pay this £60.”

UK Parking Control did not respond to a request for comment before Echo went to print.