Council reviews parking fines on disabled drivers

PUBLISHED: 12:31 26 January 2006 | UPDATED: 20:19 03 May 2010

A PARKING fine imposed after a disabled woman's blue badge had expired is to be reviewed by the district council. The ticket was put on Valerie Lyons' car when she drove her disabled mother Pat Jackson to St Albans just before Christmas. Mrs Jackson, aged

A PARKING fine imposed after a disabled woman's blue badge had expired is to be reviewed by the district council. The ticket was put on Valerie Lyons' car when she drove her disabled mother Pat Jackson to St Albans just before Christmas. Mrs Jackson, aged 72, had not realised the badge had expired, particularly as her husband had died suddenly shortly beforehand and she had been diagnosed with leukaemia. No reminder is sent out when a blue badge expires. Despite Valerie writing to St Albans parking shop outlining the extenuating circumstances which had led to her mother forgetting to renew her badge, the council refused to waive the fine. But this week Valerie said her mother had received a letter asking for a photocopy of the valid disabled badge and promising to review the situation. "We are very pleased that they are looking into it," she added. The decision to reconsider Mrs Jackson's parking ticket and that of other cases which have been highlighted in the Herts Advertiser where blue badges have expired and the owner has been unaware has been made by St Albans council leader Robert Donald. He has also apologised to other motorists given tickets on Friday, December 23, in the Civic Centre car park even though they had paid. He admitted this week he had been greatly concerned about the cases which also include the fine imposed on disabled Roger Meads on Christmas Eve in Wheathampstead when he stopped outside a chemist in the High Street to pick up a prescription.

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I should probably have taken the hint! Walking out into the garden recently an unprecedented flock of thirty or more crows raucously greeted me from the treetops at the bottom of my garden. Cawing and croaking these big, black birds clung clumsily to the top most branches and twigs, jostling and flapping to stay balanced in a constant flurry of feathers. There is always something ominous about crows – they are after all carrion crows, the vultures of the bird world – always watching for scraps and weakness that might mean their next meal.

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