A moot subject

tesco sign

Do you recognise this scenario?

The one where you pull in to your local supermarket and discover all of the disabled bays are taken. So what do you do?

Do you turn the car around and return home? Do you drive to another store hoping that you can find a suitable parking space? 

Or, do you risk the wrath of a parent or vandalism to your vehicle (or worse) because you dared to park in a ‘Parent and child’ parking space?

As a father to five all of whom are aged ten and under (the youngest is four) I am quite entitled to utilise the ‘Parent and child’ spaces at supermarkets. But if you are in the situation I mentioned above why shouldn’t you?

After all, although supermarkets have a duty to make sure that disabled people can easily access their stores, there is no requirement which says that they have to make it easier for parents with children. The simple reason parent and child spaces are provided is because it makes life easier for parents who spend lots of money, it’s just a gimmick.

No disabled person chose to be born disabled, not one person ever wanted to become disabled. Yet many choose to have children. So who has the moral high ground?

Legally, if the off street car park is displaying the correct signage, then they can charge you if you park there. Yet do they do the same to disabled bay abusers?

I realise this is an emotive subject, but what are your thoughts?


sainsbury fine


7 thoughts on “A moot subject

  1. I have been disabled for many years after falling down some concrete steps. I have also suffered with type 2 diabetes for more years than I can remember, but on 16th June 2004 I was out on my motorcycle which I had purchased just 10 days earlier when a car driver on his mobile phone pulled across the front of me then stopped suddenly as he not seen workmen in the road. He also had not seen me due to concentrating more on his phone call. I wasn’t speeding. In fact I was well under the 30mph speed limit. I slammed on both brakes and remember skidding about 1 metre with both front and back wheels locking up on me. Crunch! Without doubt, my helmet saved my life. I slid up the fuel tank and came to a stop suddenly when my nether region hit the headstock on the handlebars and my head carried on going forward. My helmet slammed into the roof of the car just above the rear passenger door, just where the strengthening bar is to stop the roof caving in if he turns it over. This is where the chin piece on my helmet saved my face. The front forks on the bike snapped. Another safety feature. That way the bike stays put and sticks in the car rather than going over the top. I then went over the top instead and banged my forehead onto the road. Again my helmet saved my life in the same accident. At this point I somersaulted over and banged the base of my back onto the road, crushing 3 vertebrae in the base of my back. I rolled for several yards before I came to a stop. I just laid there in the middle of the road, not knowing if I was alive or dead. Frightened to open my eyes as I did not know whether traffic had stopped.

    I have no idea how long I had been there when this voice said, “Are you alright mate” I lay there motionless as I really didn’t know. Again this voice asked, “Are you alright mate?”
    After being asked several times I opened my eyes and slowly moved my fingers, then my hands, toes, feet, elbows, and knees just to make sure that nothing was broken. I put my right arm on the floor as I sat upright and in one swift movement, jumped to my feet. Strange thing is, I had not been able to do this for several years due to the accident with the steps.

    I looked around and saw that my pillion passenger had got up and was coming to check me out. I then walked around to the other side of the car and saw the damage to my bike…………..Still have to take a timeout when telling this story. Adrenalin at the time made me still quite mobile and I actually thought for over on hour that I had got away with it, even to the point of refusing the ambulance. Huge mistake that was.

    The car driver luckily admitted that it was his fault and I got paid out fairly quick. That did not stop the flashbacks that I got frequently and sometimes even to this day.

    My biking days are finished and although I still drive a manual car with no adaptions, when I see another car driver using his phone whilst driving I get really annoyed. Then when I see one of these drivers pull into a BB space I have a habit of becoming very confrontational. Because of these inconsiderate low lifes who put me in this situation who even want to steal MY PARKING SPACE. I cannot get in or out of my car now unless I open the door as wide as it will go.

    “I’ll only be a bloody minute”, well it’s a lifetime for me. Sorry for rabbiting on but I am now shaking with rage……………Able bodied and stealing my space. You may not be looking for me but you can be sure that I am looking for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I understand that parent and child bays make it easier for parents as the spaces are wider, but I think they should be further away. It annoys me so much when you find parent and child bays are actually closer than disabled spaces! When I have had my nieces in the car is the only time I feel comfortable parking in a parent and child space, but then before I became disabled, I wouldn’t have dreamt of parking in a disabled space, so perhaps I am just that type of person that I don’t like parking where I don’t have permission. I have had to turn around and drive home frequently. I recently needed to move my car to get to the next shop along as it was too far for me to walk, but there wasn’t any more spaces so I had to forgo going into that shop, even though there was a parent and child space. In fairness though, even that space wasn’t actually close enough for me to park in.
    It has shocked me so much how many people park in disabled bays without badges. As I never had done, I didn’t realise people would be so selfish as to do it, and it upsets me as well as making me angry.


  3. This is a very tough subject as I have been looking around some social network groups ! And have found that some of the members in a few Parent child parking groups are of the opinion that if supermarkets were to move there parking away from the doors to the back of the car parks they would suffer less abuse than BB parking ! And to be honest I can see there logic in that thinking. Of course this would meen that BB spaces would suffer more abuse from that action

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As a disabled BB holder and mother, I find I do have the ‘best of both worlds’.

    If I’m having a good day, I’ll use the Mother and Child bay (altho’ this should be updated to Parent and Child!) so to save a BB space.

    If on a bad day all the disabled bays are in use but I don’t have a child with me and IF the Mother and Child spaces are closer, then I’ll use one and take my chances. I’ll also display my BB and hope anyone who challenges me will have an iota of compassion. Mind you, if I get challenged on a bad day, I’d probably stand and cry my eyes out due to the sheer pain! Lol.

    I guess I’m saying that if using the space is out of necessity, then I’m afraid I’d have no choice.


  5. I agree there is a need for safe p and c spaces but not near lthe entrance necessarily. I get fed up with p and c parking in blue badge spaces, however I feel their need isn’t as great as blue badge holders. If there is no Blue Badge space I definitely, without hesitation park in a p and c space. The difference is that if I can’t park near I can’t shop, if a parent can’t park near they have to walk a bit further or carry their child., or heaven forbid watch the cold more carefully.


  6. Personally, I would not use Parent & Child Parking, even if it means I have to park further away.

    Having said that, I would not condemn a severely Disabled person from doing so. I just wouldn’t myself.

    Liked by 1 person

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