Frustrated motorists are hitting out after being fined £30 by council wardens for parking in town centres within a free time limit.
New charges were introduced on July 4 at seven car parks owned by East Dunbartonshire Council.
But the new regime, which allows free parking for the first two hours, has met with a barrage of complaints.
One driver told the Herald he returned to Barleybank Car Park in Kirkintilloch to a parking ticket from a warden after a 15-minute haircut.
He said: “Apparently motorists still have to get a ticket even though it costs nothing for the first two hours. But there is no sign to tell you.
“It is an absolute shambles. The council hasn’t organised things properly as usual.”
Motorists face a £30 penalty charge if paid within two weeks - otherwise the charge rises to £60.
The local man added: “I was stressed enough as I was on my way to Marie Curie Hospice to see my father who is very ill. I really didn’t need this.”
After similar complaints, the council said “prominent signage” would be displayed “as a matter of priority”. But it refused to confirm if drivers would get their £30 back.
Thomas Glen, Depute Chief Executive - Place, Neighbourhood & Corporate Assets, added: “Parking charges were introduced for selected car parks on 4 July and the new system is still bedding in.
“As a result of feedback, further prominent signage will be installed as a matter of priority - making it clear that a ticket is required even if parking for less than two hours in one of the selected car parks.
“As well as the new signage, a new leaflet has been produced emphasising the need to obtain a free ticket even if you plan to park for less than two hours. For more information, visit www.eastdunbar ton.gov.uk/parking.
“There has been a range of feedback on parking charges - including positive comments from local businesses who have welcomed the increased turnover of parking spaces in our town centres - improving access, reducing frustration and encouraging people to visit.”
When asked by the Herald if motorists would get their money back, he would only say appeals would be considered on an individual basis.