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Cancer victim hits out at parking fine

PUBLISHED: 20:12 18 June 2010 | UPDATED: 18:04 30 June 2010

A TERMINALLY-ill Caister man has hit out Great Yarmouth Borough Council after he was given a £75 parking fine, despite having his Blue Badge on show.

Ian McGregor, 57, of Hebrides Way, said he had only been parked in the village's Beach Road car park for 20 minutes to go for a slow walk with wife Jongrak, and two-year-old cocker spaniel Poppy, but this was enough time for the parking attendants to fine him for not paying the parking fee.

A TERMINALLY-ill Caister man has hit out Great Yarmouth Borough Council after he was given a £75 parking fine, despite having his Blue Badge on show.

Ian McGregor, 57, of Hebrides Way, said he had only been parked in the village's Beach Road car park for 20 minutes to go for a slow walk with wife Jongrak, and two-year-old cocker spaniel Poppy, but this was enough time for the parking attendants to fine him for not paying the parking fee.

However, Mr McGregor, who has stomach and liver cancer and can barely walk, believed the attendants should have been more lenient towards him because he was a badge holder, which entitles him to park for free at on-street parking facilities, though not in off-street car parks, such as Beach Road.

It was his first visit to the car park, and he was not aware of the eight disabled bays, when he parked on Sunday shortly after 10am. The bays are to the left as drivers enter the car park.

The father-of-two said he would pay the fine, although it was a genuine mistake.

The Scot, who used to work for Bristow Helicopters in Norwich, said paying the fine would be especially tough as he had to survive on £120 a week disability benefit because he can no longer work. His cancer prognosis was deemed terminal by doctors in January.

However, he said because of his mobility problems he could not walk as far as the dunes and stopped at the lifeboat station while his wife went on with their dog.

He added: “I am not looking for sympathy. I just feel the parking attendant could have shown more humanity to a disabled badge holder.”

However, a council spokesman said: “Charges apply to all customers whether they hold a blue badge or not. All of our disabled bays have been widened and are clearly marked, however customers can appeal if they want to dispute the ticket they received. Great Yarmouth Borough Council treats all its customers fairly and consistently.”

She added: “Our information boards clearly display that tariffs are payable and the period these apply for.

“Obviously we do understand there are times when people arrive and do not have sufficient change to pay, therefore a small grace period is always allowed before an excess charge notice would be issued.”

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