A LONG AWAITED redesign of Ripley hospital car park is finally in the pipeline after authorities met for the first time in over a year.
On Thursday, January 13, members of Amber Valley Borough Council’s planning board held talks with Derbyshire Community Health Services, the primary care trust (PCT) that runs the Sandham Lane hospital.
A new design for the much criticised parking facilities will now have to be submitted by hospital management by the middle of February, with a public consultation meeting expected shortly after.
It means the middle parking bays, which were blocking cars in at busy times, will go.
The PCT has also been asked to submit a new parking management plan to deal with the flow of cars going in and out of the hospital.
Ripley town councillor and Amber Valley planning board member, Ron Ashton said: “There has been a lot of two-ing and fro-ing between the council and the PCT.
“In my opinion Derbyshire Community Health Services have been dragging their feet a bit, this could and should have been sorted out months ago.”
In November it was revealed that talks between the two parties had broken down because the PCT had failed to submit a parking management plan. The PCT claimed they had tried to meet with the council to discuss the matter, but were refused meetings since October, 2009.
A barrier, which was installed to prevent non-patients parking at the hospital was never implemented.
However Associate director of service delivery at Derbyshire Community Health Services Tim Broadley said the barrier system will stay.
In a statement issued this week he said: “The revised layout proposes to omit the double banked parking spaces and retain a barrier control to enable the free flow of vehicles.
“We would like to thank all our patients and all the local residents for bearing with us during this time and we do apologise for any inconvenience caused.”
In October retired couple Terence and Edith Swain, 66 and 70. from Pine Close, near to the hospital persuaded the PCT to hold a public meeting with nearby residents to the hospital on October 15. They asked to the PCT to consider other options besides a barrier system.