The Blue Badge Scheme provides national parking concessions for people with severe walking difficulties who travel as drivers or passengers. The scheme is also for people who are severely sight impaired.
People who have blue badges can park close to their destination in on-street parking and some car parks.
A blue badge costs £10.
Please be aware that there are some organisations and websites which offer a service to help you apply and they will charge you for this help. You don't have to use such a service to be able to apply.
There is only one place you can apply or renew online and that is on the GOV.UK website. This is where our 'Apply or renew now' button takes you. This is a national system and we recommend that you carefully read and follow the instructions on the GOV.UK website.
Apply or renew now
Clicking the button will take you to the blue badge application page on the GOV.UK website, where applications are processed centrally. The page gives you information about how to use the online form to apply and how to track your application. Please read the instructions carefully on how you can track your application.
We do not offer a drop in service, so please don't bring your application/payment/supporting documents to our reception area.
Please note that we may need to ask you to attend a mobility clinic where an Occupational Therapist can assess your difficulty with walking.
We aim to process all applications within 28 days on receipt of all supporting documents, payment and photo. If applications are missing information then the application will take longer to process. If your application is referred to an occupational therapist this may extend the timescale in which your application is finalised depending on the availability of clinic appointments.
Who can have a blue badge
You can get a badge without further assessment if you:
- receive the higher rate of the mobility component of the Disability Living Allowance
- receive a Personal Independence Payment for being unable to walk further than 50 metres (a score of 8 points or more under the ‘moving around’ activity of the mobility component)
- are registered blind (severely sight impaired)
- receive the War Pensioner's mobility supplement
- are a severely disabled service person or veteran who is compensated under the new Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS)
- have received a lump sum benefit within tariff levels 1 to 8 of the Armed Forces and Reserve Forces (Compensation) Scheme and has been certified as having a permanent and substantial disability which causes inability to walk or very considerable difficulty in walking
You can get a badge following an assessment if you:
- have a permanent disability that means you can’t walk or have considerable difficulty walking
- have a severe disability in both your upper limbs, you regularly drive a motor vehicle and that you are unable to operate, or have considerable difficulty operating, all or some types of on-street parking equipment
- are a child under the age of 3 who always needs medical equipment with you that cannot easily be transported, or if you are affected by unstable medical conditions and may require emergency treatment
You can use a blue badge on a moped. The badge must be visible and securely fitted to the moped.
Where you can park
Most car parks provide dedicated parking bays for blue badge holders that are often free, but you should always check the display board because some places charge. Blue badges are sometimes not recognised in private car parks.
On-street parking is free. You may also be exempt from limited parking times and can park for up to three hours on yellow lines (except where restrictions are indicated). Please, always check local signs for information.
There are also agreements about where you can park when travelling in Europe.
If you disagree with the decision not to issue a blue badge
If your application is not successful we will tell you why and how you ask for the decision to be reviewed.
If you request a review we will need to share your information with an occupational therapist, who may ask to see you. They will then make a decision based on policy and their decision is final.
Organisational blue badges
Organisations which transport disabled people and who meet the eligibility criteria can also apply for a blue badge. You can apply online on the GOV.UK website.
You can apply for multiple badges for your organisation by completing just one application form.
The GOV.UK website has more detailed information about organisational blue badges.
How to get a replacement blue badge
Lost or stolen badges - If your badge is lost or stolen you must first report it to the police. Then contact us so we can cancel your badge to prevent it from being used fraudulently.
A replacement blue badge costs £10.
You can request a replacement badge on the GOV.UK website but must pay for the replacement by cheque. Please make cheques payable to Somerset County Council and send them to:
Blue Badge Scheme, Somerset County Council, County Hall, Taunton TA1 4DY.
Cancelled badges can no longer legally be used and cannot be reinstated, so even if the badge is later found or returned you must still pay the £10 fee and a new badge issued.
Defaced badges - If your badge becomes faded and the details are unreadable, please contact us to arrange for it to be replaced. A replacement blue badge costs £10.
How to renew your blue badge
Blue badges are not automatically renewed. We will contact you up to 8 weeks before the expiry date on your badge to remind you to apply for a new one.
If you change your address please let us know immediately to ensure any correspondence is sent to the correct place.
When your old badge has expired it is no longer valid and you should securely dispose of it yourself. There is no need to return it to us.
When you receive your new badge, it should not be used until the 'valid from' date, which is clearly shown on the badge.
If you move into or out of Somerset your badge will still apply, but please notify the council of the county/area you are moving out of so they can transfer your details to the new authority.
How to return your badge
If you no longer need your blue badge, please post it back to the address below and tell us the reason you no longer need it.
Blue Badge Scheme
Somerset County Council
If you are using the Tell us once process to register the death of someone who had a blue badge, if you give permission, this information will be passed to us so that you don’t need to contact us separately.
There is no need to return expired badges as long as you are able to dispose of it securely.