Blue Badge Parking Scheme FAQs
What is the Blue Badge Parking Scheme?
The Blue Badge (Disabled Persons’ Parking) Scheme was introduced in 1971 under Section 21 of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970 (‘the 1970 Act’).
The aim of the scheme is to help disabled people with severe mobility problems to access goods and services, by allowing them to park close to their destination. The scheme is open to eligible disabled people irrespective of whether they're travelling as a driver or passenger.
The scheme provides a national range of on-street parking concessions to blue badge holders. It allows them to park without charge or time limit in otherwise restricted on-street parking environments, and allows them to park on yellow lines for up to three hours, unless a loading ban is in place.
The scheme doesn't apply to off-street car parks (you'll need to check any car park that you use to see if you have to pay, and whether there are any restrictions).
In England the scheme is administered by local councils on behalf of the central government Department for Transport (DfT). In Shropshire there are two local authorities which administer the scheme: Shropshire Council and Telford and Wrekin Council. Your issuing authority will be the one to which you pay your council tax, and/or from which you receive council services such as waste collection. Find out which is 'your' council online (just enter your postcode).
Role of central government
The Department for Transport (DfT) is responsible for the legislation that sets out the framework for the scheme in England. This includes:
- The prescribed descriptions of disabled people to whom a badge may be issued, ie the eligibility criteria
- The maximum fee that can be charged by local authorities for issue of a badge
- The period of issue of a badge
- The grounds for refusal to issue a badge and the grounds to withdraw a badge
- The circumstances in which a badge should be returned to the issuing authority
- The manner in which a badge should be displayed
- The national concessions available to badge holders under the scheme
Role of local authorities
Local authorities are responsible for the day-to-day administration and enforcement of the scheme, and for determining and implementing administrative, assessment and enforcement procedures which are in accordance with the governing legislation set by the DfT.
The DfT has stated that it's the responsibility of each local authority to ensure that badges are only issued to residents who satisfy one or more of the eligibility criteria set out in the legislation that governs the scheme, and that under no circumstances should anyone who doesn't satisfy at least one of the criteria receive a badge.
Am I eligible for a blue badge?
Take a look at our eligibility criteria page. When you begin your application, you'll be asked a series of questions to check whether you're eligible. The guide on the gov.uk website will help you in preparing your application.
You can check your eligibility and/or submit an application online or request an application pack by phoning the Shropshire Council Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or by emailing email@example.com
If you intend to apply/reapply online we'd suggest that you have the following to hand:
- Your blue badge number (first six digits on the badge if you're a badge holder)
- Your national insurance number
- Your valid driving licence (if you hold one)
- A digital photograph (this must meet passport standards)
If you're applying/reapplying under ‘walking difficulties’, and where you've been prescribed medication for your medical condition/disability, we'd advise that you also have a recent prescription to hand in order assist with completing the application.
Do I need to give proof of residence or identity?
All applications for a blue badge, whether a first time application, a re-application or a renewal application, must be accompanied by photocopied proof of your residence within Shropshire, and photocopied proof of your identity, both of which must be selected from a set list of acceptable options provided by the DfT.
For proof of your identity, copies of your birth, adoption or marriage certificate can be obtained from the General Register Office or the registration district of your birth, adoption or marriage. If this was Shropshire please phone Shropshire Council Customer Service Centre on 0345 678 9000.
Alternatively, you'll have to provide a photocopy of one of the following documents as proof of your identity: current passport, valid driving licence, divorce certificate or civil partnership dissolution certificate.
Please take the time to read and understand the declarations on the form as they underpin the terms of applying for a blue badge. We may refuse to issue a badge if we have reason to believe that the applicant is not who they claim to be, or that the badge would be used by someone other than the person to whom it has been issued.
Is there any guidance on photograph requirements?
All applications must be accompanied by one colour photograph which should match passport standards. If you send your photo in digitally, it should be:
- In colour
- In .JPG or .GIF format
- No larger than 200 KB
- The same aspect ratio as a passport photo - where the height is 4.5cm and width 3.5cm
Please see the government's guide to requirements for passport photographs, which outline the specifications your photograph should adhere to.
Can I get a blue badge for my organisation
Blue badges may be issued to an organisation for use in a motor vehicle used solely for the purpose of transporting disabled people who would themselves be eligible for a badge. An organisation is defined as meaning one concerned with the ‘care and transport’ of disabled persons to which a disabled person's badge may be issued. An organisation would be required to provide proof of any vehicle adaptations and disabled passenger vehicle (DPV) excise exemption.
You can find more information, check your organisation's eligibility and/or submit an application online. Alternatively, you can request an application pack by phoning Shropshire Council Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
How much does a new, renewal or replacement badge cost?
The maximum fee that a local authority can charge, set by the DfT in England, is currently £10. This fee is payable on all new, renewal or replacement badges, and will only be requested once your eligibility or right to receive a replacement badge has been confirmed or reconfirmed.
There are no exemptions to the fee payable in Shropshire.
What do I need to do if my clock/time disc is lost or damaged?
Contact the Shropshire Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or email email@example.com, giving the blue badge number (first six digits), your full name, date of birth and postal address. A replacement clock/time disc will be posted to you. There's no charge for a replacement.
How do I apply for a disabled parking bay outside my house?
To apply for a disabled persons’ parking place marking, an applicant must be the holder of a valid blue badge.
My application has been turned down - can I appeal?
By law we don't have to have an appeals process for people who don't agree with their application being refused, but if you're not happy with the decision, we'll carry out a review if you feel that the information you supplied wasn't considered properly. Please note that the emphasis is on you to provide additional supporting information, and not on us to gather it on your behalf. You should include any such new information you believe to be relevant; for instance further information on your mobility impairment, diagnosis, prognosis, and any medication, which must be in addition to the information you've already provided at the application and/or assessment stages.
Any additional information needs to be current and relevant to the national eligibility criteria. This can also be a letter or a report from your GP or any other medical professional who may be involved with any current treatment you're receiving. However, it will be your responsibility for any payment required by your GP or consultant for the production of any such report.
We will not make contact with any medical professional, past or present, associated with any treatment you may have had or that you're receiving, or that you're due to receive.
We won't consider a review of the decision to refuse without additional information, and therefore if no new information and/or medical evidence is received, it's unlikely that we'll change the original outcome of your application.
A request for a review must be received within 28 days of the date of the letter refusing you the issue of the parking concession, and it and any new supporting evidence must be returned for the attention of the senior officer (blue badge appeals) at the following address:
Blue Badge Service
The nominated senior officer will consider all the evidence you've presented and will make one of three decisions:
- Uphold the original decision and not issue you a badge
- Overrule the original decision and issue you a badge
- In order that a decision may be made, require that you attend an independent mobility assessment (IMA) or a further IMA
Can I have two blue badges?
No. Under the DfT’s legislation only one badge can be issued per person. The badge is issued to a named person to use in any vehicle they're travelling in.
What do I do if I move?
I'm moving within Shropshire
If you're a badge holder in the process of moving within Shropshire, or have moved within Shropshire, please contact the Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with the details of your new postal address.
This will allow us to forward a renewal reminder to your correct address prior to the expiry date of your current badge.
I'm moving into Shropshire
If you're a badge holder in the process of moving to, or have moved to, Shropshire, please contact the Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or email email@example.com. With your approval we'll then contact the local authority that issued you your badge to request that your blue badge record be transferred to Shropshire.
This will allow us to forward a renewal reminder to your correct address prior to the expiry date of your current badge.
If your badge is still current please continue to use it as normal.
I'm moving out of Shropshire
If you're a badge holder moving to an area outside Shropshire, or you have moved out of Shropshire, please contact the blue badge team of your new local authority, which with your approval will contact us to request that your blue badge record be transferred to them.
If the badge is still current please continue to use it as normal.
How do I return my badge and time disc?
You must return the badge securely to the Shropshire Blue Badge Team or as otherwise instructed if:
- Your badge has expired
- Your medical condition/mobility has improved and you're no longer eligible
- You've been issued a replacement badge for one that's been lost or stolen, and the original has been found or recovered. The lost badge will be cancelled and not be usable for concessionary parking
- Your badge becomes faded or damaged and is illegible
- Your badge is no longer required, eg should you be confined to the house
Death of a badge holder
When a family member or executor contacts us to make an appointment to register a death, they'll be asked if the deceased was a blue badge holder. If so, they'll be advised to take the blue badge and time disc with them when registering the death in order to hand them over to the registrar, who will forward them to the Blue Badge Team.
I've changed my motor vehicle - do I need to let you know?
No. Motor vehicle registration numbers are recorded at the time of an initial application, and any changes can only be captured at each and every time a renewal application is received.
How do I use my blue badge?
Badge holder’s rights and responsibilities
At the time of issue of a new, renewal or replacement badge, all applicants/badge holders are issued with the Department for Transport Leaflet ‘The Blue Badge scheme: rights and responsibilities in England’. This leaflet describes your responsibilities as the badge holder, where you can and cannot park, and also the penalties for misuse of the parking concession. The badge is not a licence to park anywhere and, like other road users, you must obey the rules of the road, as laid out in the Highway Code. Don't park where it would endanger, inconvenience or obstruct pedestrians or other road users.
It's down to you to use the blue badge properly. The badge and concessions are for your use only, and you can use your blue badge when you're travelling in any vehicle either as a driver or passenger. It's your responsibility as the badge holder to ensure that a driver is aware of the rules set out in the above leaflet. No family member, friend or neighbour can use your badge unless you're travelling with them in a vehicle at the time.
It's a criminal offence for you or anyone else to misuse the badge, and in doing so could lead to the badge holder, the user, or both receiving a £1,000 fine, and may also result in the confiscation of your badge.
As a badge holder you may be exempt from payment of tolls at certain river crossings, bridges and tunnels. Find out more from the following gov.uk webpages:
Toll concessions can change, so you're advised to check before travelling.
How do I use my badge in London?
The Blue Badge Scheme doesn't currently fully apply in four central London boroughs due to specific traffic management concerns that exist in these areas.
More information is provided in the ‘The Blue Badge scheme: rights and responsibilities in England’ leaflet. You can also find out more from the Blue Badge London website.
Central London congestion charge scheme
As a badge holder you don't have to pay the congestion charge, although you'll need to register with Transport for London (TfL):
- Helpline 0845 900 1134
- Text phone 020 7649 9123
How do I use my badge when travelling abroad?
Within the European Union (EU)
You can still use a badge anywhere in the EU, but how they're used varies from country to country. Information on using a badge abroad is provided in the Department for Transport leaflet ‘The Blue Badge scheme: rights and responsibilities in England’.
Outside the European Union (EU)
There are no current arrangements for you to use your badge outside the EU in countries such as the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, although they may be prepared to recognise it. You're advised to check what concessions are available in these countries before travelling.
Disabled visitors to the UK (Shropshire)
EU blue badge holders visiting the UK will be entitled to use their badge and parking concessions as UK blue badge holders.
Visitors from countries outside the EU, such as the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand who are holders of a disabled parking permit or badge may apply to have their permit or badge recognised in Shropshire during their visit to the UK. Visitors will need to contact the Shropshire Council Blue Badge Team on 0345 678 9014 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, providing the following details:
- Disabled parking permit/badge serial number
- Country and state of issue
- Permit/badge expiry date
- Full name of permit/badge holder
- If residing in Shropshire during your visit please provide your full residential address