Free car parking service for NHS staff battling coronavirus ‘cannot continue’

Free parking coming to an end would see staff made to pay full charges for stopping their vehicles at work but some people would still be exempt. However, charges for key staff such as frontline doctors and nurses battling the virus look set to be re-introduced despite proposals to end charges back in March. 


  • Car parking fines have been issued to NHS staff

Some hospitals have been found to charge up to £2 per hour in staff car parks which can see costs rise to £16 for an eight hour shift. 

Health minister Edward Argar has said the government was looking at how long the support will “need” to go on. 

He has added the support “cannot continue indefinitely” but no firm date has been set for the scheme to come to a close. 

Mr Argar said: “The provision of free parking for National Health Service staff by NHS Trusts has not ended and nothing has changed since the announcement on 25 March.

“However, free parking for staff has only been made possible by support from local authorities and independent providers and this support cannot continue indefinitely.”

Good Morning Britain’s Piers Morgan slammed the decision to re-introduce parking charges across the UK as he branded the government “tone deaf”. 

He accused Boris Johnson of “kicking the boot in” after plans were leaked just days after the Prime Minister remarked care homes had not followed Covid-19 guidelines. 

He said: “Hundreds of NHS workers are risking their lives for us, and their award is that they’re going to charge all of our workers who are saving our lives for parking again. Utterly disgusting.”

Car parking charges may be introduced for UK workers  [INSIGHT]
Motorists could be fined for parking in this area  [ANALYSIS]
Parking a car like this could see drivers fined  [PICS]

At the start of the pandemic, Mr Morgan had offered live on air to refund any parking charges for NHS staff.

He has since revealed he would be starting a new campaign to completely scrap parking charges for NHS staff as he described the move as “heartless”. 

He added: “Once again, the government have done something thoughtless and heartless and the public backlash will be so intense that they will have to do a u-turn and look weak again.

Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran has attacked the move and called for clarity for NHS workers. 


  • Furious Piers Morgan offers to pay NHS workers’ parking fines

She said staff must not be “saddled with extortionate parking charges” as staff deserved “certainty” without “extra chargers or hassle”. 

Ms Moran said: “Removing parking charges for staff at the outset of Covid-19 was the right move.

“Our healthcare workers deserved to have certainty that they could get to work without extra charges or hassle.

“Now the Government must provide clarity and ensure our workers are not saddled with extortionate parking charges. We also need to see more efforts to promote green transport options for our healthcare workers.”

Mr Argar confirmed free parking would still be offered for the diabled, requernet outpatient attendees, parents of sick children and night shift workers. 

These policies were put into place by the Health Secretary in December last year and will not be changed under current plans. 

Mr Argar revelkad the implementation of the schemes had been “on hold” due to the virus pandemic as hospitals devoted parking areas for staff, 

He said: “Implementation of this commitment has been on hold whilst the NHS has been managing the COVID-19 pandemic and devoting its hospital parking capacity to staff and other facilities necessary for managing the pandemic.”

The Isle of Wight Council has already announced non NHS key workers will no longer receive free parking from Monday. 

The council says it will continue offering the service to all NHS staff and care workers dealing with the coronavirus firsthand. 

However the council says parking will no longer be offered to other key workers who previously benefited from the service. 

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