Parking ticket is withdrawn for 91-year-old

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A pensioner who received a parking ticket because the expiry date on her disabled badge was obscured, has had the charge withdrawn.

The 91-year-old, who had parked in West Street for 10 minutes to do some Christmas shopping, says she is very happy the issue has been resolved.

A letter stating the penalty notice had been cancelled was sent to the town’s DUP office, which had appealed the fine on the pensioner’s behalf.

Councillor Robert Smith said he was delighted, as was MP David Simpson, that the charge had been waived, given the “reasonable explanation” for the error.

The senior citizen had parked correctly in a disabled space, but unbeknown to her, the disabled badge was upside down.

She told the Portadown Times at the time, “The badge must have been blown upside down when I was leaving my niece off.

“I was terribly upset when I got back and saw the ticket. At my age, these things annoy you. and I haven’t been able to sleep.”

A TransportNI spokesperson said, “The Blue Badge was displayed in such a way that the expiry date was obscured and the traffic attendant acted correctly by issuing a Parking Charge Notice (PCN).

“The PCN was subsequently challenged and supporting evidence was presented proving that a valid Blue Badge was held.

“Given the circumstances of the offence, on this occasion, the department accepts that that driver made a genuine mistake and has issued a warning and waived the PCN.”

The letter pointed out that the Blue Badge must be displayed with the front of the badge, showing the wheelchair symbol, facing forward so the relevant details are legible from outside the vehicle.