ParkingEye seeks green light to roll out barriers and payment machines at hospitals in Chorley and Preston three months after system is installed

The signs which popped up at the car parks at the hospitals in Preston and Chorley in January
The signs which popped up at the car parks at the hospitals in Preston and Chorley in January
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A controversial parking firm has applied for the green light to roll out its system at hospitals in Preston and Chorley three months after it was installed.

The Buckshaw-based ParkingEye introduced its car park management system, complete with new barriers, payment machines and ANPR cameras, at Royal Preston Hospital and Chorley and South Ribble District General Teaching Hospital over the Christmas period.

But it has only just requested approval for the plans to install the system in at the hospitals to the corresponding local authorities.

The retrospective proposals from ParkingEye were only published by Preston City Council on Sunday, March 10 and on February 22 at Chorley Council.

Planning documents sent to Preston state: "The proposal will ensure that the existing car park is used more effectively and reduce the amount of abuse that currently occurs."

A ParkingEye spokesman said: “Planning permission for all our equipment at Chorley and South Ribble District Hospital and Royal Preston Hospital has been submitted to the respective councils.

"It is common practice for planning permission to be applied retrospectively for sites such as this."

In January there was new year chaos and widespread condemnation after the new parking system came into being at both hospitals.

Visitors and patients told of a 40-minute wait to pay and queues were seen stretching around corridors in Royal Preston Hospital and across the front entrance at Chorley after the changes to parking were brought in.

Chorley MP Sir Lindsay Hoyle said the new system was ‘alienating the community that the hospitals are meant to serve’.

At the time one Lancashire Teaching Hospitals governor also spoke to the Post to tell of a "mutinous" atmosphere among members of the governing council after the troubled introduction of the system.

Ken Jones was suspended after publicly criticising Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust over the way the parking changes had been handled.