Duncan Bannatyne has threatened to ban “young and able” gym-goers from his fitness centres for life – after they used disabled parking just to get near the entrance.
Last night one Twitter user took to social media to raise their issue with the Dragon’s Den entrepreneur.
They tweeted directly at him, saying: “It’s sad to see young, fit, able lads parking in disabled spaces at Bannatyne Fairfield just to get near the entrance.”
Bannatyne responded this morning, saying: “If I catch them they will be banned for life”.
Other Twitter users reacted strongly to his claim that he would ban gym-users at the Fairfield centre, in Bedfordshire.
One applauded him, saying: “Great tweet. Some people really need those spaces and they are there to help them access the locations for a reason.”
User Janet Borland added: “You are so right on this – it’s not only being nearby, it’s the extra width for a wheelchair at the side and back of the vehicle.”
One more piled in to say: “Well said, Mr Bannatyne. Blue badges are issued for a reason.”
Others claimed that Bannatyne was ignoring what could be “invisible disabilities” – where someone’s incapacity is not immediately apparent.
But Bannatyne stood hard and fast by his claim – saying that unless gym-goers had a blue disabled badge, they would be less-than-welcome at his centres.
In another tweet this morning he said: “Badge holders can park in disabled spaces. Non badge holders can’t. Simples Simples Simples.”
Bannatyne has a mixed record on social media.
In December he became embroiled in a row after a 12 year-old boy asked him for business advice online.
Rocco Rose, of Darfield, South Yorkshire, tweeted at Bannatyne, only to receive a reply asking him: “Who do you think you are?”
Twitter exploded with outrage at Bannatyne’s response, branding him a “coward” for the foul up.