Tempers fray as car park ticket machine only gives instructions in Welsh
Richard Evans, local democracy reporter
Tourists and some locals were left scratching their heads when a pay and display parking ticket machine only gave out instructions in Welsh.
Queues developed as non-Welsh speakers struggled to work out how to pay for their parking at Rhyl’s central underground car park near the promenade, which is administered by Denbighshire County Council.
The queues were made worse when the machine also failed to recognise debit cards.
A local motorist, who understands basic Welsh, but who is not fluent in the language was caught up in the queue to pay on Thursday afternoon.
The motorist, who asked to remain anonymous, said one driver was so frustrated he gave up trying to figure out the machine.
“The man stormed off when the machine repeatedly failed to accept his bank card. ‘Why are the instructions only in Welsh. Not many people in Rhyl speak Welsh’.
“Another family from the Merseyside area also struggled as half a dozen people crowded around the faulty machine, trying to solve the problem. ‘I’m going to be late for my meeting’ another driver told me when he finally got his ticket.
The motorist added: “I paid £4.50 for this all-day ticket. I only wanted to park here for two hours, but I couldn’t work out how to adjust the time because the instructions were in Welsh.
“The whole point of a car park is you can park quickly and easily. You don’t expect to stand in a queue for half an hour whilst people try and work out how the machine works – or doesn’t work in this case.”
A spokeswoman for Denbighshire County Council said “Our car parks team are looking into this issue.
“We would like to remind people that there are two other machines available in the Rhyl Central car park and people can use the pay-by-phone smartphone app with location code 804281 as an alternative way of paying.
“Our pay and display machines default to Welsh, but there is a large grey ‘language button’ that people can press to change the language.
“This is explained on the machines; however, customer service management is also patrolling to assist customers on site.”
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