‘Parking fine is just unfair ... I won’t pay’

Disabled driver Francis Gedman from Billinge is angry after he was issued a �70 parking fine for parking ten minutes over in a council car park
Disabled driver Francis Gedman from Billinge is angry after he was issued a �70 parking fine for parking ten minutes over in a council car park

A blue badge holder is refusing to settle a parking fine after he was stung with a £70 levy for overstaying in a disabled bay by just 10 minutes.

Francis Gedman, who suffers from a number of conditions and requires assistance to walk, was ticketed by parking wardens while out in St Helens town centre.

The 62-year-old had parked in an official council disabled bay in Claughton Street believing he would only need the allotted three hours stay. But a number of hold-ups delayed the dad-of-five and he returned to his car minutes after his time elapsed.

“I was absolutely stunned that they would pounce after such a short overstay,” said Mr Gedman. “I am disabled and so is my wife; we just can’t afford this.”

Mr Gedman, of Brookside Close, Billinge, who ran his own haulage firm before he was diagnosed with neuropathy, a condition which results in him regularly losing feeling in his hands and feet, has already launched an appeal.

He said: “I have no intention of paying. The amount of money they are charging for the extra time I stayed is completely ridiculous.”

Mr Gedman had been helping his son Lewis, 17, enrol at St Helens College last Monday (September 2) when he was ticketed.

A town hall spokeswoman said: “If Mr Gedman had parked in one of the pay and display bays on Claughton Street with his blue badge there would not have been a problem.

“However, because he used the disabled car parking bays behind Wilkinsons there are very clear parking rules governing the maximum length of stay.”