Rip Off Britain: Lawyer Gary Rycroft gives tips on parking tickets
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A new mother posted on a Mumsnet forum asking other drivers if it was acceptable to park in a disabled space when the mother and child spaces were full. The woman, who has recently become a mother, clarified that she had never parked in a disabled space.
She said the parent and child spaces, which are often found outside supermarkets, were “freaking awesome”.
The driver said she has a car seat which is also a pram, meaning that she has to lift her son and the car seat in and out when they use it.
The woman added that it isn’t “too much hassle” but said she needed room to get him in and out.
She then asked: “I was curious if I could park in disabled space if the parent and child spaces were full.
“I honestly wasn’t sure if it was illegal or just bad car etiquette.
“Do you think it’s hypocritical that disabled can park in a parent and child space?
“Someone was actually fined by a supermarket for doing so.”
She said she was unsure of where she stood on the issue, adding that she would never “rob someone who has a hard time walking” of a space nearer to the shop.
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Finishing her post the new mother said it would bug her if there were disabled spaces free and they chose to use a parent and child space.
If a Blue Badge holder parks in a parent and child space, it is not illegal, since supermarket car parks are private property.
Local councils cannot enforce parking rules there, meaning it is up to the supermarket to decide whether they can park in those spaces.
According to Confused.com, one in seven motorists said they parked in a parent and child parking bay because they were travelling with a Blue Badge holder.
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They said that at the time of parking, there wasn’t a space available in the Blue Badge bays.
In reaction to the post, other drivers in the forum sparked a fierce debate over whether it was acceptable.
One commenter said: “I can’t believe anyone would even consider if the two are comparable.”
Another said: “I can’t get past this tbh. So entitled!
“And I say that as someone who hates the use of ‘entitled’ on Mumsnet.
“You actually went out your way to find out if you could use a disabled parking spot to get your baby out the car… Just wow.”
A third commenter responded to the original post saying it wasn’t hypocritical for disabled drivers to park in a parent and child space.
They said: “A parent and child space is wider so that parents can get babies in car seats out of the car easier.
“This can also be achieved by a parent parking further away from the store where there are likely to be more spaces.
“A person with disabilities, especially mobility issues does not have this option.
“Furthermore, being a parent and having a child is generally a choice. Being disabled is not.”
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