Dundee boss Paul Hartley escapes driving ban

Ex-Celtic and Hearts player Paul Hartley has won a battle to keep his driving licence after being caught speeding.

Paul Hartley. Picture: SNS
Paul Hartley. Picture: SNS

He was clocked by police speeding in his BMW 7 Series car in Motherwell, Lanarkshire, in April, 2012.

Hartley, 37, appeared at Hamilton Justice of the Peace Court on Wednesday where he admitted a charge of driving at 50mph in a 30mph zone.

However, even though he has now accumulated twelve penalty points, he will not be disqualified from driving because he convinced a Justice of the Peace that he needed to his licence.

Dundee boss Hartley had asked for an exceptional hardship hearing to be heard in a last gasp bid to keep his licence.

He was successful but was still fined £750 and given 28 days to pay.

The hearings are held to give drivers the opportunity to prove that a driving ban would cause them “exceptional hardship”, normally in relation to finances and job prospects.

Hartley, of Hamilton, told the hearing that he needed his licence to travel from Dundee to see his children, his mum and to work as a football manager.

He said: “I see my kids on a Wednesday and at weekends, I drive down late on Tuesday so I can take them to school.

“If I didn’t have a car it would affect my relationship with them greatly, they are at an important stage in their lives.

“My mother lives in the Hamilton area and I try to see her twice a week.

“She had a stroke six years ago and she suffers tinnitus so it is vital that I see her, I sometimes stay with her because she doesn’t like being alone sometimes.

“I do a lot of scouting work as part of my job all over the country, I have to see players personally, I sometimes work eighty hours a week.

“We are a community club so I go out and visit schools as well, we have thirty five in a partnership.

“I use my car six or seven times a day, I’m always out and about, it is vital I have a car.

“It would be detrimental to the club and the community if I did not have the car, I would not be able to do my job.”

And Dundee chief executive Scot Gardiner said: “He works seven days for us and is the hardest working manager I’ve ever seen.

“It is imperative he is mobile to go out and scout players and do his job.

“We would have to employ three drivers to drive him about if he lost his licence and that would not work with our budget.

“He could do a version of his job without a licence but he wouldn’t be able to do the job we need him to do.

“I believe it is crucial he keeps his licence and I would not be here today if I didn’t think that.”

Justice of the Peace Amjid Bashir said: “Having heard the evidence, I am satisfied that the exceptional hardship has been proved because of the effect on Dundee football club and the wider community.

“I have decided to fine you £750 and your licence will be endorsed with three penalty points but you will not be disqualified under the totting up system.”