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Trust must not waste the opportunity for boldness on hospital parking charges

November 2, 2009

conquestNick Perry, the Lib Dem parliamentary campaigner for Hastings & Rye, has urged the Chair of the East Sussex Hospitals Trust, Irene Dibben, not to waste a golden opportunity to usher in an hospital parking regime that will have the full backing of local people.

On 28 October, the ESHT Board met to discuss a report on the parking situation. Whilst it intends to continue with the pay as you leave system, it seems that the Trust is not intending to release the contractor County Parking, and will only have ‘pay as you leave’ in one of the hospital’s car parks.

Speaking to the Observer this week, Nick said,

“I had asked for details of the Board meeting at the beginning of October and the Chair Irene Dibben did not respond. Having seen the notes taken at the meeting by Margaret Williams, I now understand why Mrs Dibben may have ‘forgotten’ about my email.

“Whilst I am glad that the hospital has not resiled from its promise to introduce pay as you leave parking this year, I am a concerned that the solution on offer is not as radical as we were led to believe that it would be. I am not confident that when the Trust has done its modelling, it has researched other, fairer, hospital parking packages around the country.

Chair of the Hands off the Conquest campaign, Margaret Williams said,

“It is disappointing, given local feeling, that the hospital has decided not to release County Parking from its contract, nor has it been particularly imaginative about the number of car parks to be included in the new scheme. There is the potential here for a good new tariff structure. The opportunity should not be missed.”

Nick added,

“At the cross-party meeting that I arranged in June, there was certainly an indication from Mrs Dibben that the political parties would be involved in some meaningful consultation regarding the proposals that were to go to the Board. There has been no such thing. I hope that Mrs Dibben will be rectifying this – smartish.”


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