Disabled charge causes backlash

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Bakewell Town Council has lashed-out at the district council over plans to charge disabled blue badge holders to use its car parks.

Where blue badge holders may have parked free of charge before, Derbyshire Dales District Council will now be charging in-line with its normal daily charge rates, although those displaying a blue badge will be allowed to remain in a parking space for up to one hour beyond the expiry of paid-for time.

A spokesman said: “The view of Bakewell Town Council is that this proposal is purely financially motivated, targeting those with proven disability and it is believed that such a change will induce blue badge holders to park on yellow line systems rather than pay, thereby increasing congestion.”

A Derbyshire Dales District Council spokesman said: “The Blue Badge Scheme provides for motorists who have disabilities that impair mobility - it is not intended to provide financial assistance in respect of parking and is not means-tested.

“Last year we invested significantly to make adjustments for disabled users, increasing the number of designated spaces and installing new accessible pay points.

“The existing right to park on restricted stretches of the public highway is not affected by this proposal. Blue Badge holders will continue to exercise that right.”