A FORMER teacher of the Welsh language at schools in Conwy and Rhyl has successfully won his case against a parking fine he received but refused to pay because it was written in English.

Toni Schiavone, who taught at Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy and at Rhyl High School, had been fined £70 after he parked at a public car park in Llangrannog, Ceredigion in September 2020.

The car park is managed by One Parking Solution, but Mr Schiavone, a Welsh language campaigner, did not pay the fine on the basis that it was issued in Wales, but written in English.


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Deputy judge Owain Williams threw the case out of court on Friday August 4, as the parking company had delayed too much before launching an appeal and presented the case under incorrect rules.

Mr Schiavone appeared in court in the original case, in May 2022.

A representative from One Parking Solution did not appear in this case, although counsel was present on behalf of the company, so it was thrown out.

Speaking in court, Mr Schiavone said: "The travel costs of One Parking Solution's counsel alone are more than it would have cost to translate the fine, and the cost of holding the court case is a hundred times greater than the cost of providing a Welsh fine letter.

“The company's attitude has been completely contemptuous and completely against the rights of Welsh speakers."

The judge ordered that One Parking Solution cover Mr Schiavone’s travel expenses.

Mr Schiavone said he would donate this money to the Cancer Research Wales charity.

Following the case, Siân Howys, chair of the Welsh language rights group Cymdeithas yr Iaith, said: "We are pleased that the judge ruled in favor of the defendant, as in the recent similar case in Caernarfon, when Mervyn Jones-Evans ruled that a defendant did not have to pay an English-only fine.

"It is becoming increasingly clear that the companies need to change their attitude towards the Welsh language.

“In order to put pressure on them, we have launched a campaign today to discourage people from paying for parking in car parks where the signs are in English only, or the resulting fines.

"The government should set standards in this area and for other businesses, albeit such as supermarkets and banks, so that the private sector must operate in Welsh."