Permit delay causes parking chaos around Bassetlaw Hospital

NHS staff at Bassetlaw Hospital are being forced to choose between £9 a day or abuse on residential streets due to delays in permits being issued.

By Kirsty Hamilton
Friday, 20th August 2021, 7:00 am

Over the pandemic, hospital workers were thanked for their hard work on the front line with free onsite parking.

But in line with government policy, since July 19, Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals has begun charging staff as Covid-19 restrictions have eased.

Some staff now face paying £8.70 a day because of delays in issuing of parking permits to park on site.

On street parking around Bassetlaw Hospital

One hospital worker, who wanted to remain anonymous, said she has been waiting for a parking permit for four-and-a-half years, and due to an admin error when the parking changed hands she has found herself back at the bottom of the list.

She cannot afford to pay £180 a month – a quarter of her wages – on parking and, like many staff, has been forced to find alternative places to park

She said: “Many mornings I have driven round the estates looking for somewhere appropriate to park. With many of the roads being double yellow lined this has meant I have had to park outside local residents houses and so have many other members of staff.”

She said she and her colleagues often have to deal with anger from the residents, and have ended their shifts to find expletive notes left on their windscreens.

“I always ensure that I don’t block driveways but this is never good enough,” she said.

"I then have to walk 15 minutes to and from work and face the anxiety of what I will face on each journey.”

She added: “Something needs to be done. Doncaster Royal Infirmary has a park and ride which is free to NHS staff. We have nothing like this at Bassetlaw.

“I understand how frustrating it must be for the local residents but what are we to do? To the residents the car park does look empty, and it is.

"However, without permits, parking in the hospital's car park will result in a fine each time due to the registration recognition system.”

Residents have argued they are now unable to park outside their houses due to the stream of cars.

One local resident said: “I don't think that NHS staff should have to pay for parking, however, where the cars are parked currently just isn't practical and is dangerous.

"How long until someone gets knocked over or an accident occurs, resulting in NHS resources being required?”

Bassetlaw District Councillor Madelaine Richardson, of Worksop North East, said she is frequently contacted on parking issues and safety and called on the hospital trust to reduce charges to a minimum rate.

Dr Kirsty Edmondson Jones, director of estates and facilities at DBTH said: “Colleagues can apply for a permit which offers parking at a significantly discounted rate, and we are currently undertaking work to release more of these in the coming weeks and months.

“Unfortunately, space will always be at a premium, and we must balance access for both colleagues and patients (and their respective visitors), however, we are currently exploring where we can create more parking areas, and, as such, release more permits to staff. We are also working with local partners to try to increase provision.”

She added: “In the meantime, we will continue to ask our team to be respectful and considerate when leaving their vehicles, ensuring our neighbours can access their property without issue, and local roads remain clear from obstruction.”