Resident slams 40-metre disabled parking bay ruling as 'unfair'

The resident says the 40-metre disabled parking rule was unfair as it penalised those who needed a parking space.
The resident says the 40-metre disabled parking rule was unfair as it penalised those who needed a parking space.

A Blackburn man has spoken out after being refused a disabled parking bay at his house due to a ’40-metre rule’.

The resident was also told he could park in someone else's disabled bay as long as he had a valid blue badge, however that would then mean that disabled person would not have a designated bay to park in.

The resident of St Michael’s Street, close to Whalley Range said his application to Blackburn with Darwen Council for a parking bay outside his home was refused because a disabled parking bay had been approved for someone else within a 40-metre distance.

He called the decision "unfair" and "heart breaking".

Blackburn with Darwen Council said the 40-metre rule was in place to help the authority "manage available kerb space" and residential parking bays could be used "by any blue badge holder".

The man, who did not wish to be named, said: “It just does not make sense whatsoever.

“I got told someone else nearby had also applied so I was not able get a parking bay.

"Apparently, it is within a 40-metre radius of another approved parking spot. The rule was brought in some years ago and now you can’t get a new parking bay.

“What are people who genuinely are entitled to a parking bay to do? There is simply not enough parking on this street which is made up of around 30 houses.

“People have more than one car and I only own one car. I no longer go out after 4pm as I can’t get a spot outside my house when I get back and sometimes have to park on adjoining streets.”

According to Blackburn with Darwen Council, "if you are a disabled resident you may apply to have a disabled parking bay marked on the highway, outside your home".

The council website states: "A disabled parking bay is only valid for the duration of the blue badge.

"The cost for applying for a disabled parking bay is £120, while to renew a bay costs £60."

The resident, who applied in October, was also told he should use another disabled parking bay instead.

He said: “Apparently, I can park in another disabled parking bay. So where does that person park?

“The last time I did this someone scratched my car. This rule is clearly going to cause feuds and arguments. Can you imagine what would happen?

“This decision has caused me a great deal of stress and frustrations but I know there will be others who have gone through the same ordeal. It is unfair on blue badge holders and heart breaking.”

Blackburn with Darwen Council said there was no statutory requirement for Local Authorities to provide disabled parking bays.

Martin Eden, Director of Place, said: “The Council has a disabled parking bay policy in place to ensure fairness when processing applications and to assist the team in making decisions.

“The policy has several criteria that assists officers when deciding. A residential disabled parking bay application will be rejected if it does not meet all or a single criterion stated at the time of application.

“The 40m distance to another residential disabled bay is in line with the criteria surrounding a blue badge application and is to assist the Council in managing available kerb space as it’s at a premium.

“Residential parking bays may be used by any blue badge holder and applicants are informed if this as part of the application process.

“At this time, there is no statutory requirement for Local Authorities to provide residential disabled parking bays on the highway, yet we choose to provide them to assist our residents in parking close to their homes.

“However, we have to manage parking expectations for all residents across the borough, hence the rationale for introducing the 40m criteria.”