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Directgov’s blue badge map scores for footie lovers!

Directgov’s blue badge map scores for footie lovers!

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 22 September 2009

Directgov, the nation’s official website, today announces major improvements to their Blue Badge map to help disabled people travel across the UK more easily. Disabled football fans can now use the map to find out about a stadium’s accessibility before going to games by visiting www.direct.gov.uk/bluebadgemap

And it’s good news for train travellers too, as the new rail map gives information about more than 2,000 train stations. This means disabled people can find out about station facilities and can book direct assistance in advance.

The map already contained a wide range of helpful information, from the location of disabled parking bays to accessible beaches. The new additions are:

a rail map containing information on accessibility and disabled facilities for more than 2,000 train stations in the UKassessments for more than 500 of these train stations accessibility information for more than 160 major football stadiumsenhanced information on London underground stationsenhanced information on car parking across the UK

The new additions have been created by the Directgov Disabled People and Carers section, which is based in the Office for Disability Issues.

Jayne Nickalls, Chief Executive of Directgov, said:

“We’re delighted that this valuable information is now available on Directgov. We hope that the improved Blue Badge map will help disabled people and their drivers get out and about across the UK to enjoy their passions.”

Tim Cooper, Director of the Office for Disability Issues, said:

“We want disabled people to have greater control and independence in their lives, including how they spend their leisure time. We hope Blue Badge holders and their drivers will use the map to plan their travel by road and rail.”

Danny Wallace is an ex-footballer who played for Southampton, Manchester United and England. He has multiple sclerosis and – as well as being a Blue Badge holder – he is also an ambassador for the National Association for Disabled Supporters (NADS). Danny said:

“I know first-hand how important Blue Badge parking is for disabled people and the knack is to know where to find spaces especially on match day. I was pleased to hear that NADS and Directgov have been working together and sharing their information in this way. The Blue Badge map is an important service and one that should help disabled fans across the UK.”

Notes to Editors

The Blue Badge scheme provides a national range of parking concessions for disabled people with severe mobility problems who have difficulty using public transport. Find more at: www.direct.gov.uk/bluebadgemapDirectgov, provides user-friendly, 24/7 information on all government services – including education, transport, tax, crime, the environment, employment – all in one place and in plain English.As well as being available on the website www.direct.gov.uk, which now attracts more than 20 million visits a month it can also be accessed on any internet-enabled mobile phone, and on TV. www.direct.gov.uk is a Hitwise Top 10 Award winner for the quarter ending October - December 2008. During this period, www.direct.gov.uk ranked No. 2 based on market share of visits among all United Kingdom websites in the Hitwise Government - Central industry category. For more information, please visit www.hitwise.co.uk/Please note: Directgov is spelt as one word and with a lower case ‘g’.

For any queries about the Blue Badge map please contact:

Natalie Hobbs - 020 7449 5068

natalie.hobbs@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

Contacts:

Helen Beckett.
Phone: 020 7829 3817
helen.beckett2@directgov.gsi.gov.uk

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