A COUNCILLOR whose car was pictured parked in a disabled bay has insisted she did nothing wrong and condemned “despicable attempts to discredit her”.

Cllr Joyce Kellett, the vice-chairman of Bolton Council’s planning committee and a former mayor of Horwich, was snapped by a member of the public parking her Mitsubishi Warrior in a disabled bay at the public hall, in Horwich.

The photograph was sent anonymously to The Bolton News.

Despite not displaying a blue badge, Cllr Kellett, Labour member for Horwich North East, parked in the spot closest to the hall’s rear entrance.

The photo was taken in September, but the same car parked in the space again at the last meeting of Horwich Town Council on October 24.

Cllr Kellett has been criticised for her “inconsiderate actions” by fellow Horwich town councillors, but maintains that she received permission to use the space from the hall’s caretaker.

She said: “I don’t believe members of the public can access the back car park anyway, and I was told by the caretaker that I could park there in the evenings.

“My understanding is that you can only access the car park with a tag, so it should not affect disabled people.


“As a pensioner, in the winter months and the dark it can be quite frightening going up unlit side streets, and I thought this would be a way to avoid that, without causing any harm.

“It is a matter of safety more than anything else, and I wouldn’t dream of parking in that spot without permission, but I was told it was okay.

“I’m the first person to criticise people for parking in disabled bays.”

Cllr Kellett slammed the person who sent the photograph to The Bolton News for a “political move”, and said they were cowardly in hiding behind anonymity.

She said: “I believe this is political, and I have a strong suspicion as to who might have sent it. If I was doing anything wrong, these people would presumably have sent the photo to the authorities, rather than to the newspaper.

“This is just point-scoring, and I think its despicable.”

Lib Dem town councillor Stephen Rock, for Claypool, disagreed with Cllr Kellett’s claims that the spot is never required by disabled people at evening meetings.

He said: “It concerns me, and obviously I think it’s totally wrong as parking there could prevent a disabled person coming to the meeting.

“You never know who is intending to attend meetings, so it is inconsiderate to use that spot.

“It is on council land but, then again, many car parks are on council land as well, and they are enforceable.”