While there are many things that garages need to contend with when running their business, finding space to look after all of the cars that they are working on is a major issue. A garage will be keen to be busy, which means dealing with as many cars as possible, but when this happens, it means that they need to find a considerable level of space to ensure that they can look after all of their vehicles. This means that some garages and mechanics will get creative in finding and utilising space but one mechanic in Plymouth got into trouble due to his creative solution to a lack of space at his garage.
Wolfgang Smith who hails from Southway appeared before the Magistrates Court in Plymouth, accused of filling up a city centre car park with up to 15 cars, and even a boat! Plymouth City Council has been in regular contact with the mechanic in the past year and in the last six months, they have served a number of informal warnings on Smith. Smith has been running a car repair and servicing facility on the residential car park. After Smith failed to respond to the informal warnings issues by the Council, the Council believed that they were no left with no alternative but to see seek a legal resolution to the problem. This led to the situation where Smith was issued with a five year ASBO for his actions.
Mechanics have to keep their cars somewhere
The Magistrates Chair, Janet Owens, said that the ASBO was necessary to safeguard local residents and to ensure that action would finally be taken. It was reported that Smith took up around a quarter of the total spaces available at the communal car park at any given time. Mrs Owens said; “There is evidence to show that up to 16 vehicles, including a boat, were parked there and they were connected to you. You have acted in an anti-social manner.”
There was also evidence provided which suggests that Mr Smith had been responsible or dumping car parts and oil near the site. In defence, Mr Smith disagreed with the ASBO, and said that he had provided plenty of support for the local community. He said; “I have never harassed anybody. In fact I have only helped neighbours when they have asked for help. When I get the call to say neighbours have fall over I go over to pick them up. I’ve even taken them to hospital. I understand what they are saying but an ‘anti-social behaviour order’ is an unfortunate term. It sounds harsh.”
It has been an eventful year for Mr Smith, who has also lost 7 stone since last July, and he said that he is keen to put the matter behind him. Mr Smith also said in court; “At the moment I’m unemployed, although I’m not claiming benefits. I was made redundant from Kawasaki two years ago so I got redundancy and an insurance pay out. I hope now to start up and make a living now this is sorted out. I was obese so I couldn’t work. I had major surgery and I’ve lost seven stone since July. Now I’m feeling fit and better every month and I’m ready to up properly.”
Plymouth City Council released a statement, saying; “The council is pleased that Plymouth Magistrates’ Court has made a five-year Anti-Social Behaviour Order with regard to Mr Wolfgang Smith. The magistrates’ found that Mr Smith had acted in a manner that caused or was likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress.”