Search

Hornchurch mum denied parking bay as severely disabled son doesn’t meet ‘national criteria’

14:25 27 February 2014

Pauline Henkel with her disabled son Ben

Pauline Henkel with her disabled son Ben

Archant

A mother whose son cannot walk and has the mental age of a toddler has been denied a disabled parking bay close to her home because Havering Council said her son does not meet the “national criteria”.

Instead Pauline Henkel, of Park Lane, Hornchurch, must struggle to find a space and must often cross the busy road where they live, pushing her severely disabled son in his wheelchair.

The 35-year-old cares for Ben, 13, who has a rare condition called chromosome 22 deletion syndrome which means he is unable to walk unsupported and must use a wheelchair most of the time.

Pauline, who has been given a blue badge due to her son’s disability, says she is often forced to park some distance from the house they have lived in for a year and must struggle down the busy, narrow and crowded road where “nobody stops for you”.

The chromosomal abnormality that Ben suffers with causes heart problems, “severe” learning difficulties as well as bone and muscle problems.

He has become very heavy for the mother-of-four to push but the council has said he doesn’t meet the ­requirements for a bay.

“I would like a parking bay but at first the council refused me because my son can’t drive,” said Pauline. “He’s 13 though and he never will [be able to] drive.”

At Ben’s last assessment, it was deemed that he had the mental capacity of an 18-month-old.

Cllr Steven Kelly, leader of the council, said: “It was made clear at the time we rehoused Mrs Henkel that there was no parking ­immediately outside the property, but there is space in the road for her to park safely, without having to cross a busy road with her son. Although it is always difficult to apply eligibility criteria to people, we must do so to ensure we are fair to all and Mrs Henkel’s son does not meet national criteria for a disabled bay.”

0 comments

Latest News Stories

06:49
Robert Gurling

Essex Police continue to search for a Romford man who took his three-year-old son from foster parents on Saturday.

Yesterday, 15:00
Candidates with students

Pupils were treated to a lively election debate when candidates 
visited to discuss their policies.

Sunday, May 3, 2015
Paul Freedman is applauded by other runners

A 90-year-old man who has raised more than £100,000 for St Francis Hospice since his wife Teeny’s death in 2007 was applauded by runners at the start line of last week’s London Marathon.

Sunday, May 3, 2015
Robert Gurling

Police have appealed for help to find a Romford man believed to have abducted his three-year-old son from his foster parents.

Most read news

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Pop on the most stylish eyewear around from Specsavers.

London eyecare specialists Specsavers are offering London24 readers the chance to win a £150 voucher to spend on stylish eyewear in the city.

Two phones. Same phone case. Genius.

To celebrate the launch of the first luxury dual phone case, PearPeel, we are giving away two of the black leather Rocha cases, perfect for holding two iPhone 6 handsets.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Romford Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder