Hospital neighbours say their roads have become staff car park

Posted On 07 Oct 2020 at 9:23 am

Bowring Way yesterday, where 17 out of 23 cars displayed NHS permits

People living in the streets near the Royal Sussex Hospital have spoken of their frustration at NHS staff using their roads as an unofficial car park.

All NHS staff, health and social care staff and NHS volunteers are now entitled to a pass which allows them to park in council on-street bays and off-street car parks free of charge.

During lockdown, the numbers of staff still working at the hospital were reduced which meant that this didn’t cause too much of an issue.

But since more employees – including office staff, managers and support staff – have returned to work, the streets around the hospital have been full of hospital workers’ cars.

And this is particularly frustrating for residents who are paying £140 a year for controlled parking which is now not being controlled in the same way.

Carole Donovan, a member of the Bristol Estate Community Association (BECA), said: “There is a lot of frustration, particularly since it appears that it’s not front line staff but office staff/managers.

“It’s a lot, lot worse since the easing of lockdown and non essential staff returned. I don’t know why they don’t use the park and ride.

“I counted 31 cars on Walpole Road last week and 25 were displaying NHS badges.

“It’s not only there, although that’s particularly bad, it’s the whole of Zone H.

“It’s not that we aren’t grateful, it’s just that they are pushing the residents out. They seem to park where they want, including double yellows and motorcycle bays, although there seems to have been a crack down on that.

“I now don’t want to come back after the school run in the mornings.”

Another resident who lives in Bowring Way said: “There are so little parking spaces and every week there are more and more hospital staff parking here displaying a key worker permit.

“Yesterday we had 17 out of 23 parking spaces.”

A spokesperson for Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust said: “Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust seeks to be a good neighbour in all its activities.

“Although the Key Worker Parking Scheme allows parking in resident only bays, this fact is not promoted in the information shared with staff, and they are encouraged to use pay and display bays.

“The trust further supports the initiative by running its park and ride scheme for staff in a Covid safe manner and by not charging staff for parking on site.

“Information about the proper use of the parking scheme is available to all staff and is shared with them regularly.”

A council spokesman said: “A council spokesperson said: “We are continuing to offer free parking for NHS staff, Health or Social Care Workers and NHS Volunteer Responders while carrying out their duties in line with guidance from the British Parking Association.

“From 1 October, all staff must have a relevant pass shown on their windscreen instead of a letter to be eligible to this offer.

“We have recently increased enforcement to ensure that only those that are eligible, benefit from this scheme. We have also displayed warning letters and contacted the hospital to make them aware of this.

“We want to thank all NHS staff, Health or Social Health workers and NHS Volunteer Responders for their vital work throughout this pandemic, keeping the people of Brighton & Hove safe.”

  1. Bill Shay Reply

    Totally agree. This is a flagrant abuse of a courtesy that should only be extended to “Key” workers, not all the accountants and clerical staff that are using our streets as a free parking zone. It is now virtually impossible to find a space in Zone H if you are a resident that has paid for a permit.

    • Steve Reply

      No it is not an abuse or a courtesy as many non key worker NHS staff have been given permits to park in that area. Most have worked throughout the pandemic and were not furloughed or able to work from home or were safe to use public transport. Although some are clerical they are still essential to the workings of the NHS. Consider for example the hundreds of consultant letters that are processed every week.

  2. Alan Towler Reply

    Many have resident’s permits for neighbouring zones and could walk or cycle to work. Far too many huge vehicles carrying just one person. Struggling businesses
    near the hospital have nowhere for their customers to park. This scheme needs to stop. Zone H permits should be refunded before we all start considering a legal challenge to this well intentioned but chaotic scheme.

  3. neil Reply

    There a shuttle bus to the marina, which has a big car park which isnt used.

    Why hospital staff can’t use that and be brought in.

    Its ridiculous now, you actually don’t go wanna go out as you don’t know if you can park somewhere near your own home on returning.

    During the week, the majority of spaces are packed with “keyworkers” with some parking their cars in motorcycle bays.

    Now its clear a lot are not frontline workers as the cars are way too expensive and posh for the proper hospital workers to afford!!

  4. Christine Easterbrook Reply

    This opportunistic use of our limited resources comes on top of the disruption caused by construction workers and vehicles. Added to this the car parking wardens at the hospitals multi-storey car make no alluwzncd fro residents trying to leave or return. Construction vehicles are allowed to park in a way that obstructs residents (driviers and pedestrians) access to their homes. Pedestrians have to walk in the busy road as vehicles park on the pavement and then walk through cigarette smoke and rubbish. We gave been dealing with this for years now it’s time we were given compensation.

  5. Phil Murrell Reply

    What a miserable bunch of local selfish residents, unbelievable that they would actually complain

    • alan towler Reply

      Why don’t you give B&H council £140 for nothing just so you get an idea of why we complain. Nobody minds helping out when there is a real need but this scheme is pure chaos for those who have to live with it.

  6. M Reply

    Perhaps the problem of NHS staff parking in Zone H roads is just the visible result of a much bigger problem at the hospital.
    B.C. (Before Covid) the hospital had arranged staff parking at sites close to the Marina and at the Racecourse, and ran a shuttle bus for the staff to and from those parking sites. The main car park at the rear of the hospital was mostly used by patients and their visitors who paid for the privilege of parking on-site.
    Since the outbreak of Covid, the staff have been allowed to park in the main car park for free. This did not present much of a problem due to the much reduced number of cars needing to park in the car park, but now the car park is full from early in the morning. Staff are arriving at the hospital and finding the car park is full, they don’t have enough time to drive to either of the off site car parks and then wait for the shuttle bus unless they arrive at work very late. They therefore search for parking in the neighbourhood streets and walk to their work, which is now the visible result of a different problem.
    Solve the problem of too many staff trying to park at the hospital and the Zone H parking problems should be reduced.

  7. Peter Reuben Reply

    this is what happens when the greens are running the place – as a tax paying resident and Brightonian, it’s like being being kicked into the ground and urinated on by a disgusting drunk and drug addict. Then being forced to turn round while they urinate on my face

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