Controversial decision to increase cost of parking at hospitals will be reconsidered.

Dewsbury and District Hospital.
Dewsbury and District Hospital.

A controversial decision to increase the cost of parking at the district’s hospitals will be reconsidered.

Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust introduced new charges for disabled blue badge holders at Pinderfields, Pontefract and Dewsbury Hospitals.

Motorists are now charged £2 for parking for up to one hour and £2.80 for longer.

Charges increased for drivers without a blue badge, from £1.30 to £2 for up to one hour and from £4.10 to £5 for between two and four hours.

Hospital bosses will refer the policy back to its board of directors following a meeting with Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff.

In a letter to the trust’s chief executive Stephen Eames, she said: “I have been contacted by a significant number of constituents who have been caused distress by this decision.

“A man who attends hospital every week is just managing to cope on his pension and believed that paying to park his car would ‘tip him over the edge’.

A woman tearfully explained her husband had been an in-patient for several weeks and was paying more than a hundred pounds a month just in parking fees.”

The blue badge parking charges and new charging system at Dewsbury hospital came into force in September.

The increases for other motorists started on August 1.

A spokesman for the trust said: “We agreed Paula Sherriff MP could attend a future board meeting and put forward her views in person.

“Introducing a capped car parking charge of £2.80 for blue badge holders means we can invest in parking provision.

“We have kept the charges in line with other NHS Trusts and off-street car parks in Wakefield and North Kirklees.”