Hampstead teenager offered five-figure sum for website which fights parking tickets in seconds
- Credit: Archant
A former Hampstead schoolboy who built an innovative website allowing drivers to appeal parking tickets in seconds has revealed he turned down a five-figure sum for the site.
Joshua Browder, 18, who was until recently a pupil at independent University College School (UCS) in Frognal, created free website donotpay.co.uk after successfully fighting several parking tickets issued by Camden Council.
The website generates pre-composed appeal letters in seconds that are tailored to different complaints.
Since then, he has received global press attention and been featured in every national newspaper for his summer “pet project”.
The website now has 40,000 users, and just yesterday Joshua “politely declined” a buyout offer totalling tens of thousands of pounds.
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“I wanted to continue expanding the site into other areas and didn’t want to lose control,” he explained. “I ultimately want to see it grow.”
Joshua, who is about to start studying computer science and economics at Stanford University, said he has been overwhelmed by the plaudits he has received for the intuitive website.
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Explaining why he built the website, he said: “Camden is particularly over-zealous in issuing parking tickets and I received a few tickets after starting to drive.
“I appealed them and once they were successful, my family and friends asked me to help them with their appeals. I was soon writing appeald for everyone I know.
“I thought, if it worked for them once, I can create a website to help people all over the country.”
Joshua, who taught himself to code aged 12, said the most rewarding part of the project is receiving letters of thanks from disabled people and pensioners who received tickets mistakenly.
He now hopes to create a sister website helping people to claim compensation for delayed flights free of charge.