"Scam websites" are seeking to profit from people applying for a Blue Badge for disabled parking - according to Gloucestershire County Council.

A blue badge is available to disabled people to allow them free parking and access to services and facilities.

It's free to apply for one through the council website - and if the application is successful, applicants pay a £10 charge for the badge.

But some Gloucestershire residents have reported being caught out by websites that are charging fees of around £50 for processing people’s applications.

These sites have URLs relating to parking permits and carry out the same application process that applicants can do themselves via the local authority or GOV.UK, but are in no way affiliated to the blue badge scheme.

These websites may not be illegal but they exist solely to make money by charging for an application process that is absolutely free. Just because a website appears at the top of the list on an internet search it may not be the best one to use. Please ensure that you use the official website.

Andy Hermiston, Gloucestershire trading standards