Anger over blue badges

Mona Ledgway, 88, is upset after Doncaster Council refused her a Blue Badge even though she has had a knee and hip replacement. Picture: Marie Caley D4567MC

Mona Ledgway, 88, is upset after Doncaster Council refused her a Blue Badge even though she has had a knee and hip replacement. Picture: Marie Caley D4567MC

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Strict new criteria for awarding blue badges for disabled motorists mean 15 per cent of applications are now being turned down by Doncaster Council.

The figure was obtained by the Free Press after being inundated with complaints from residents.

Mona Ledgway, 88, of Arklow Road has just been refused a badge, she said: “I have had a hip and knee replacement and struggle to get about. My garage is a long way from my door so even carrying shopping is an effort, it’s putting me off going out.”

Margaret Lloyd, 87, of Balby, has been refused a badge despite having spinal surgery and having a badge for the last few years.

She said: “I feel like a prisoner in my own home now, I’m so angry.”

Joan Beck, director of adults and communities, said: “We must ensure that only genuinely eligible applicants receive a badge and we follow strict new guidelines from the Department for Transport (DfT) to make sure the system is not abused.”

A DfT spokesman said: “We recently reformed the scheme in close consultation with disabled people and local authorities so that eligibility decisions are fairer. We want to ensure that only those who genuinely meet the criteria receive a badge and that the scheme remains sustainable for those who rely on it most. However, decisions on eligibility are entirely for local authorities to take.”