BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: UK Politics
Front Page 
UK Politics 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Friday, 27 July, 2001, 10:33 GMT 11:33 UK
'Two Jags' Prescott in parking row
John Prescott getting into his car
Mr Prescott lets the car take the strain at Labour's 1999 conference
John Prescott's Jaguar caused a stir outside a Chinese restaurant by blocking a disabled parking.

Worse still for the deputy prime minister, he was asked to move the car by a campaigner for the disabled who said he had been forced to struggle 40 yards to get to his destination because he had been unable to park.

Every space taken by an agile person means one disabled person cannot park and often has to give up their task and drive home

Mark Baggley
Mr Prescott moved the car immediately when requested by Mark Baggley, who was eating in the same Chinese restaurant in Hull.

The deputy prime minister has long been nicknamed "two Jags" because of his love of upmarket cars.

Wheelchair-user Mark Baggley was returning from a birthday party on Saturday night and decided to pop in Chu's restaurant with a friend.

When he went to park his car in one of two disabled places by the door of Chu's restaurant, he said he found one of them occupied and the other obstructed by a Jaguar without an orange or blue disabled badge.

No orange badge

After parking at a normal space further away and being pushed inside, Mr Baggley heard that Mr Prescott was in the restaurant and put two and two together.

"I went up to the table and politely asked Prescott if it was his car parked outside," said Mr Baggley.

"He simply said 'yes it is'. I asked him if he had an orange badge and he gave no answer but said `Do you want me to move it?'

"I said yes and he got up and moved it to one of the many free places.

"The car was clearly in the disabled space - it's not fair."

Mr Prescott was asked about the incident as he arrived to see Prime Minister Tony Blair open a business centre in Hull, but refused to discuss it.

A spokeswoman for Mr Prescott said later: "John went into the restaurant and parked his car next to a disabled parking space.

Only too happy

"But unfortunately it was overlapping slightly into it and a man came into the restaurant and asked John if it was his car.

"John, said it was, and was only too happy to move it."

Mr Baggley, from Beverley, set up Choices and Rights Disabled Coalition nine years ago and now employs six paid members of staff, all of whom are disabled.

His coalition is involved in the Bay Watch campaign - a watchdog on able-bodied people parking in orange badge spaces.

He went on: "There is so much abuse of these spaces and this is a classic example.

"Every space taken by an agile person means one disabled person cannot park and often has to give up their task and drive home."

In 1999, as Secretary of State for Transport, Mr Prescott was criticised for taking an official car 250 yards from his hotel to the Labour party conference centre.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
See also:

01 Oct 99 | UK Politics
Prescott walks it like he talks it
30 Sep 99 | UK Politics
Two Jags does it again
25 Apr 98 | Politics
Red-faced Prescott prangs green car
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more UK Politics stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more UK Politics stories