Last week I read a very funny blog post by stand-up comedian and blogger Sam Avery. It was part of his hilarious collection of posts about life with toddler twins and the second time he has written about parent and child spaces being used by people on their own.

He separates the culprits into two groups:

  • People with no kids
  • People who had kids years ago and therefore feel superior to people with kids now.

I would recommend reading it, if only to brighten your day. His post includes a story about someone undertaking, what can only be described, as pooey revenge on an individual who parked in a space but didn’t have a child with them.

The spaces provide extra room around the car to offer those with small children the extra room they need to load both their offspring and shopping into the car, but those misusing the spaces are taking advantage of the proximity to the shop.

So, who can use a parent and child parking bay?

Car park owners are free to set out the terms on which bays can be used. The terms on which certain bays can be used depend on the signage around the car park. 

Restricting the use of certain bays to parents with young children is OK and is usually set out on the signs that a charge will apply for misuse.

Can parents use the space if their children aren't with them?

If certain bays are restricted to parents accompanied by children then the answer is no, they cannot, and if they do then they risk a PCN. 

Enforcing these spaces

It is very difficult to enforce these spaces, however more and more operators are beginning to use technology to keep track of who is using what bays and whether they are in breach of the terms and conditions of parking there. The most recent example of this use is in supermarkets.


Have you ever parked in a parent and child bay, without having a child with you? Take our poll:

To read the blog post please follow this link: