On Tuesday July 11 afternoon I drove to Horsham Hospital for a routine blood test.
There seems to be an ongoing problem with the vehicle access for visitors to the hospital.
Cars waiting for a parking space were blocking the entrance and a queue had started to form along Hurst Road.
I did a scenic tour down to the station roundabout and back, hoping that by the time I got back the entrance would be clear.
It was and I managed to bag one of only two vacant spaces.
So far, so good, but the parking at the hospital really is inadequate for today’s needs.
My second gripe - when I put a £1 coin into the parking meter opposite the main entrance I didn’t get a ticket in return.
Thinking that perhaps this was because I had used a new £1 piece and that maybe the machines hadn’t yet been adapted to accept them, I put in 60p (which was the only change I had left) and hoped I wouldn’t be longer than half an hour in the hospital.
Again, the machine refused to grant me a ticket.
I went to the main reception to report the faulty machine and was told that several other people had already reported it, but that hospital staff could do nothing to help (even put an ‘Out of Order’ sign on the machine) because the machines are the responsibility of Horsham District Council and hospital staff are not allowed to touch them.
The hospital receptionist suggested I ring the council and helpfully gave me the direct phone number for their parking ticket department.
I didn’t have any more change to try a different machine and hoped my visit would be brief and that I wouldn’t incur a parking fine.
In the event I was only in the hospital for about ten minutes.
It’s great that the Phlebotomy Department for blood tests etc is now open for longer hours and waiting times have been reduced to an absolute minimum.
When I got home I rang Horsham District Council to report the faulty parking ticket machine and was assured I would not receive a penalty ticket and that the faulty machine would be attended to. I certainly hope so on both counts.
Dorking Road, Warnham