Blue badge parking charges confusing

Before I had my blue badge car parks were straightforward. You paid and displayed or took your ticket on the way out.

Multi stories remain the same but pay and display are a nightmare for blue badge holders. Some councils charge, some don't; some are free only in marked bays, some give unlimited time others up to three hours.

You can guarantee when you go into the car park that will have pay and display in large letters but info for blue badge holders in microscopic print that you need binoculars to read. My husband doesn't, thankfully, suffer from the addled brain I have but hr is getting seriously stressed over having to park then find a meter to say what the rules are.

My local council charges, one up the road doesn't so it is only a matter of time, with my hopeless memory, that I end up with a ticket.

2 Replies

  • Unfortunately Panda you are right. The BB scheme is designed for parking 'on road' and not 'off road' where private companies can make the rules up as they go along. Councils and private car parks in particular will have very varied rules. However what you can do is go on the particular councils website and look under disabled parking. They will list each car park and say which one is free or not.

    Also, if you are given a ticket then it must be lawful. Signage is very important so don't assume that just because it's a council that it's correct! If the signs are in the wrong place, too small, say the wrong thing or misleading then you can challenge the ticket by appealing. Personally I always park in disabled bays but even then you must read the signs, some of those have different time limits too. If you park in a normal parking bay you have unlimited time.....that has to me always seemed rather odd!

  • It isn't straightforward at all is it, and there is no standardisation across councils. In my area the district council ignore them and charge, the county and adjoining district do permit free car parking. Country parking tends to be on the road, district in car parks. In our area a lay by type park on one side of the road is a district blue badge charging set up, on the other side the lay by is council owned and free BB parking.

    I found out that in parts of London (Westminster if I recall) , BB count for nothing- which makes trips to St Ts and Guys tricky.

    Others permit BB when the holder qualifies for certain benefits (denoted by a nil charge Vehicle Excise Licence I thik)

    I entirely agree about the size of the print too- sometimes I'll just opt to park on double yellows - but sensibly .

    Car parking charges are one of the greatest sources of income for councils so many are just out to screw the motorist.

    APsnotFab is absolutely right about the need for proper signs for parking fines to be legal. I have just been reading of a councilor in Exeter, an ex-policeman, who claims that when councils took over parking enforcement, that they ere obliged to carry out a review of all parking orders to make sure the signs etc were correct. He reckons drivers have been wrongly charged locally to the tune of around £750,000.

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