NHS Fife asks council to deploy parking attendants at Fife hospital

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Fife Council will consider taking on parking enforcements for the NHS at St Andrews Community Hospital.

No waiting restriction, disabled bays and one hour short stay parking bays at St Andrews Community Hospital could all be enforced by Fife Council parking attendants in the near future. North East Fife area committee councillors considered the request from NHS Fife at a meeting this week.

Although there was some discomfort over the prospect of allowing local authority managed parking attendants to monitor NHS parking facilities, members ultimately agreed to allow the plans to go out for public consultation. The results will eventually be brought back to the committee for a final decision.

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“This is an unusual application, and I’m a bit uncomfortable about it,” Councillor Donald Lothian (Lib-Dem for Howe of Fife and Tay Coast) said. “I think this is the NHS punting its own inability to manage its parking onto the council. I don’t think it’ll make a jot of difference whatsoever, in blunt terms.”

Councillors will get public's views on plans to deploy parking attendants at the hospital (Pic: St Andrews Citizen)Councillors will get public's views on plans to deploy parking attendants at the hospital (Pic: St Andrews Citizen)
Councillors will get public's views on plans to deploy parking attendants at the hospital (Pic: St Andrews Citizen)

Speaking specifically about the one hour parking bays, Cllr Lothian said he could imagine people parking there in good faith and staying longer than expected due to delays.

“Coming out after an appointment you’ve arrived on time for that’s been delayed to find you have a parking ticket doesn’t strike me as being very clever,” he said. “I’m not comfortable with this, and I don’t think it’ll make any difference.”

Councillor Robin Lawson (Conservative for St Andrews) was hesitant to stretch council parking management attendants any further than they already are.

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Hea said: "They don’t come to St Andrews every day and there are a lot more problems with parking on double yellow lines in the centre of town. I really question whether we want them to take on additional responsibilities if they’re not being paid more, or if we don't get more people in.”

However, a roads and transport officer assured the committee that Fife’s parking management team had been consulted, and they do have capacity to enforce hospital parking.

“Our parking management team have said they are able to enforce this as is the case with some other hospital sites in Fife,” the case officer said.

Despite some discomfort, councillors agreed to let the proposals go out for public consultation.

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