To the Person Parked in the Disabled Parking Space

04/08/2016 16:44 | Updated 04 August 2016
Picavet via Getty Images

To the person who parked in the disabled space,

It's ok I know you won't be long, you're just nipping to the cash point.

I know you've had a long day at work and you want to run into the shops really quickly to grab something for dinner.

I know you've left the engine running so you're not really parked as such.

I'm sure there's no traffic warden coming so you should be ok, I saw you check around to see if you'd get caught. I'm sure everyone's done it at some point so why shouldn't you do it, just this once.

I'm sure it won't matter, there's plenty of other spaces people can use on the other side of the carpark, the lazy buggers can just walk a few more steps can't they - after all if they can manage to walk round the shop they sure as hell can walk through the car park right?

And if anyone else questions you I'm sure you'll be able to set them straight, that limp looks quite bad so I'm sure they'll believe you without you having to tell them to mind your own business, although you can always throw that in just for good measure.

Sadly by parking there you've prevented me from doing my shopping today, you probably stopped someone else yesterday and I'm sure someone will park there tomorrow and stop someone else from using that shop too.

Because sadly those spaces are the only spaces many people can use.

Not because they're too lazy to walk a few extra steps, I'm sure most would love to have that option.

I need that space so that I can get my disabled son out of our van, it's the only space in the car park that has extra space to the side for our wheelchair ramp you see. I could park in one of the other spaces but then what happens if someone has parked next to me when I come out of the store?

Other wheelchair users need the space so they can use their lifting device to deploy their wheelchair from its roof box and then be able to transfer themselves from their car to the wheelchair.

Someone else might need that space so they have space for their walker next to the door to stabilise them whilst they try to lower themselves into the car.

Another person might need it so they have space to put their oxygen canister while they are getting in or out of the car.

And someone else might need it so they don't get out of breath walking to the front door and can at least browse the first aisle before having to have a seat and catch their breath.

So next time you are just popping to the cash point, or nipping to the shop, please consider us before you park in that space.

We don't have the luxury of 'popping' anywhere. For us just getting out of the house is an ordeal and although I'm sure it was never your intention, by taking our parking space you might be the reason we have to turn round and go straight home.

It may not seem like much, but those parking spaces do more than just provide a space close to the entrance. They allow disabled people to get out of the house and maintain some independence. They help parents with disabled children to be able to go shopping every day as they can't do a weekly shop with a wheelchair and a trolley. They allow people to take some of the stress out of their visit and there are many many reasons why people need those spaces.

Now you know the effect parking there might have had on someone else I'm sure you'll park somewhere else next time.