Income from Sheffield hospital car parks soars to £3.4m
The income generated from car parks at Sheffield’s hospitals has soared by 14 per cent to £3.4 million a year.
Staff, patients and visitors at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust shelled out just under £3,412,000 on parking charges in 2018/19, up from £2,992,000 the previous year, a Freedom of Information request by The Star has revealed.
The number of fines issued across the trust’s sites, which include the Royal Hallamshire and Northern General hospitals, also rocketed from 4,699 in 2017 to 6,109 last year.
The trust put the increased income down to additional parking spaces being created and more staff parking permits being issued.
And it said any money left after the cost of providing the car parks was accounted for was ploughed back into the NHS in the city. The figures show that last year 615 fines were challenged, with 349 being successfully overturned, but £35,370 in penalty charges was still paid.
The trust has more than 3,500 spaces across its sites, with 2,728 at Northern General Hospital, 680 at the Royal Hallamshire, 79 at Weston Park Hospital and 55 at The Jessop Wing maternity unit.
Despite the large number of spaces at the Northern General, there have still been calls for a new multi-storey car park there to meet demand, with some visitors resorting to parking on surrounding streets. The Star recently reported how a Wetherspoon pub near the Royal Hallamshire had to start charging for parking as bosses claimed hospital visitors were taking advantage.
Chris Morley, chief nurse at the trust, said: “The amount we receive from car parking always seems high because we have over 3,500 spaces and we care for two million patients each year, many of whom also have daily visitors.
“The amount we collect from car parking is not profit. It is the income we receive before all the costs of providing car parks are deducted. Every penny over and above this is re-invested back into NHS services here in Sheffield. The increase in income this year is in part because we have created additional spaces and also issued more staff parking permits. The percentage of fines which are given is less than 0.001 per cent of the total number of people who use our car parks.'’