Changes to car parking at hospitals

Wansbeck General Hospital.

Wansbeck General Hospital.

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A NEW car parking system is to be introduced at hospitals in the area.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust will integrate ParkingEye to hospitals in Wansbeck, North Tyneside and Hexham from next month.

There will be no increase to current public parking charges, which are currently £1.20 per hour.

ParkingEye will use an automatic number plate recognition system to record when vehicles enter and leave hospital sites to ensure that patients, visitors and staff pay the appropriate charge for their stay.

Under the new system there will be a free 20-minute period for ‘pick-ups’ and ‘drop-offs’; a new half hourly charge of 60p after the first hour of parking; and flexibility to pay with credit or debit card.

Disabled badge holders will continue to be exempt from all car parking charges and the trust is urging all blue badge holders to get in touch to register their vehicle.

Steven Bannister, from Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The new system will actually offer many more convenient ways for people to pay by credit or debit card if they have no cash on them.”

As part of the changes, the trust said it anticipates maintenance savings of around £70,000 every year – money that will be reinvested into patient care and developing local services.

For more details call (0191) 293 4353 or e-mail carparking@northumbria.nhs.uk