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Disabled parking changes come into force

Disabled parking changes come into force

Published at 8:30am 4th January 2016. (Updated at 3:02pm 4th January 2016)

Craven District Council has defended changes to disabled parking restrictions.

Blue badge holders will now have to pay for a ticket to park in designated bays, where previously they had three hours for free.

They must pay for a ticket on arrival, which will then allow an additional hour on top of the usual time, and an extra 30 minutes in 'pop-and-shop' spaces.

Paul Ellis, Director of Services at Craven District Council, said: "The council first agreed to introduce charges to blue badge parking on the council’s pay and display car parks back in 2011.

"Consequently, since April 2012, blue badge holders have only been provided with free parking for a maximum of three hours when parking in a designated blue badge parking space.

"If parking in a standard bay, blue badge holders were required to pay the standard charges.

"This appeared to cause some confusion, with a number of blue badge holders receiving excess charge notices, having misunderstood the new regulations.

"The changes being introduced should remove the confusion that blue badge holders appear to be experiencing at the council's car parks.

"This will eliminate any feeling of unfairness that may be felt by blue badge holders when some are able to park for free and others are not.

"We have introduced a reasonable scale of charges and additional free time, following extensive consultation, in order to take into account the needs of those with disabilities."

Blue badge holders will still be entitled to park on-street on single or double yellow lines for up to three hours, except where there is a ban on loading or unloading.

They can also park for free and for as long as they need to at on-street parking meters and on-street pay and display machines, unless there is a traffic sign specifying a time limit for holders of blue badges.