Lancashire nostalgia in 1993: Hospital parking charges, Preston North end fans want to move and amorous amphibians

Visitors to Royal Preston Hospital may soon find themselves paying to park
Visitors to Royal Preston Hospital may soon find themselves paying to park
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Here's a look at some of the stories that were making the headlines back in 1993:

Hospitals could soon charge for parking

Relatives visiting sick patients in Preston’s main hospitals could be forced to pay for car parking, it has been revealed.

The move could see pay and display machines introduced for visitor parking areas and a permit system for staff parking.

Tough measures to improve security, stop illegal parking and deal with other problems were due to be discussed by health chiefs.

But the plans to charge visitors to park at Royal Preston and Sharoe Green Hospitals have been criticised by union chiefs.

A report to Preston Health Authority giving the proposal in principle said: “It is intended to enter into a car park management agreement with a suitable company for them to manage the car parks on both sites.

“The main objectives will be to improve the current car parking control, to provide enhanced security to the vehicles parked and to provide, at no extra cost to the hospital, a total solution to the management and operations of all parking facilities together with an income to the hospital.”

Final details have still to be hammered out.

READ MORE: Look back at a selection of pictures from 1993 here

Preston North End fans state emphatically: We want to move

Preston fans have given an overwhelming thumbs up to a switch of ends at Deepdale.

A telephone poll, set up over the weekend by the Evening Post, showed supporters were almost seven-to-one in favour of leaving the wet and windy Spion Kop and moving to the fully-covered Town End.

Almost 2,500 calls were registered up to midnight of the closing day, with the voting as follows:

* Yes to a move to the Town End - 2,161

* No to leaving the Kop - 336.

The results give North End manager John Beck a clear mandate to discuss the turn-around with the club’s board.

But, although the fans are in favour, the idea may still not get off he ground.

It is understood that, following discussions with the police, extra safety work would have to be carried out at the Kop End to comply with Taylor Report recommendations.

The total cost could be in the region of £50,000 - money that the club may prefer to be spent on team strengthening.

Beck, who got the idea of a switch from talks with fans, said at the outset that he was only testing the temperature of the water.

“I don’t know what the logistics of switching ends would be - or whether we could do it this season,” he said.

Love-stricken toads are being touted as tourist attraction

Early-evening sex romps are the latest events being used to pull in tourists.

But the frolics are completely natural and the practitioners probably won’t even notice the spectators - for they are natterjack toads.

Furness and Cartmel Tourism is arranging trips so visitors to the area can watch the rare “noisy and spectacular” mating ritual of the amorous amphibians.

Tourism chiefs came up with the idea for trips to Walney Island, off Barrow-in-Furness, to help boost holiday business in the area.

The toads’ mating call can be heard nearly two miles away and they always mate in the evening and in shallow water.

There are about 50 natterjacks on the island and the toad is a protected species which is rare throughout Britain.

Tim Rogers, of Furness and Cartmel Tourism said: “The ritual is an experience not to be forgotten.

“Those who see it will be amazed by the sheer noise and spectacle of this rare sight.

“We feel this is a once-in-lifetime opportunity for people to see the natterjack in the kind of proximity you would normally never get.”

But a Cumbria county councillor has claimed the toads are now outnumber sheep in the county.