TWO disabled pensioners are reconsidering visiting Blackburn town centre after being ticketed by parking officials on Northgate.

Leslie Duckworth, 87, of Fecitt Brow, Intack, was caught by wardens while collecting a book from the library after its opening hours changed.

In a separate incident, great-grandmother Sheila Baker from Hillcrest Road, Langho, was spotted while in the bank but found an empty ticket pouch stuck on her car and now faces a £70 charge. Both are unhappy and said they doubted they would visit the town centre again.

Mrs Baker said: “I parked on Northgate unaware parking had been suspended during works on the library. I could see no signs.

“When I came back, there was an envelope stuck to my windscreen but no parking ticket inside. On the Monday I went to the town hall who told me to ring the following day.

“I spoke to someone who said there was no record but would inform me if anything showed up.

“Next thing I knew was a letter on Tuesday saying I had missed the reduced £35 charge and had to pay the full £70.

“Why should I pay £70 when the warden didn’t put the ticket in and I contacted them?

“I’m never coming shopping in Blackburn again and changing bank branches.”

Leslie Duckworth used to park outside Blackburn Library before 10am when parking is free.

Recently, library opening times changed and free parking was suspended.

He said: “The nearest car park is 200 yards away and there's only one disabled spot.

“I parked outside the library just before 10am on Monday and got a book as quickly as I could. When I came out at 10.15am a warden was issuing a ticket.

“When I asked for some grace he said, 'just because you're disabled it doesn't mean you can park where you like'.

“Either the library should open earlier or have disabled spaces outside while it’s open.

“I've had a stroke. I am now thinking twice about coming back to Blackburn town centre.”

Council highways associate director George Bell said: “Our records show the parking notice issued to Mrs Baker was intact when placed on her windscreen.

“If Mrs Baker isn’t happy, I would encourage her to challenge it.

“Mr Duckworth was issued a notice as he was parked in a pedestrian zone during enforceable hours.

“I would advise Mr Duckworth to use bays around the town centre free for blue badge holders.”