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Blue badge permits: People with 'hidden disabilities' to be eligible

BBC News are reporting that people with hidden disabilities, such as dementia, will soon be able to access blue badge parking permits in England.

The scheme is being extended to include drivers and passengers with conditions such as autism or anxiety disorders - although eligibility will be decided by the local council.

The change will come into force on 30 August. Scotland and Wales have already implemented similar rules to include some mental impairments, but the criteria are yet to be altered in Northern Ireland.

The Government will provide an extra £1.7m in funding to councils to help manage the expected increase in applications, while a review will be launched to look at how councils can tackle the fraudulent use of the permits, and improve the consistency of enforcement.