Nottingham nurse threatened with court over unpaid parking fine at her hospital

A Nottingham nurse has been threatened with court over a parking fine from two years ago at the Nottingham hospital where she works.

Deborah Das, 42, is a specialist nurse practitioner based at the Nottingham Breast Institute at City Hospital.

Currently, she is being taken to court over a parking fine from 2019 which she received while parking at her place of work.

The fine is now for over £300, despite initially being £25 when she received it for parking on a grass verge at the site and not a designated space.

She says due to such demand for a parking space at Nottingham University Hospitals Trust (NUH), despite having a permit, she never gets one when she arrives for work at 8am and she was conscious to not block any access.

NUH says Deborah has received 44 parking tickets since 2018 for inappropriate parking, including parking in disabled bays and “causing an obstruction to other vehicles.”

Speaking to Nottinghamshire Live, Deborah, of East Leake, said: “I am currently going through the mediation process to negotiate this amount but I feel absolutely disillusioned that the trust I work for would allow this to happen to their staff considering what we have all been through over the last year.

“I have worked for NUH since 2002 and have always paid my parking directly out of my wages which I was still doing in 2019.

“The trust is fully aware that there is not sufficient parking for the amount of staff who hold permits and yet they still take payment every month. Essentially we are paying for something the trust cannot provide.

“Over the past two years they appear to have actively blocked areas which staff have historically parked, for example grass verges. These areas are not walkways and do not pose any threat or danger to the public so I can only conclude this was done in an attempt to generate more revenue for parking fines on hospital grounds.”

She says parking at the hospital causes “unnecessary stress” to patients and staff alike and the parking service has not been modernised for years.

“Added to this is patients have to estimate how long they are going to be in their appointments as it’s pay and display, this creates more anguish when clinics and appointment times over run – something which is unavoidable,” she said.

“I have been asked and worked in intensive care during this pandemic. I have worked outside my scope of practice. At the breast institute we have worked tirelessly to ensure we maintained our two week wait target for suspected breast cancer referrals which we have achieved and this is how we get treated.

“We are all doing a tough job during unprecedented times and yet NUH are allowing First Parking [which runs the car park for NUH] to pursue their staff through the small claims courts.

“I feel the people of Nottingham have a right to know, many do not realise that staff have to pay to park in the first place.”

Deborah says she is willing to go to court to fight her case, despite “never having stepped foot inside a court” in her life.

NUH statement

Andrew Chatten, Director of Estates and Facilities at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “Deborah has received 44 parking tickets since 2018 for inappropriate parking, including parking in disabled bays and causing an obstruction to other vehicles. In that time we have sent her 219 letters, all of which have been ignored.

“In an ideal world we would have enough parking for everyone, but unfortunately we only have 2,722 parking spaces for our 16,500 staff to use on our hospital sites. Parking is a challenge, which is why we encourage all our staff, where they can, to use alternative transport such as the Medilink Park and Ride service which is free for our staff.

“What is not acceptable is anyone parking dangerously or in spaces designated for disabled people or emergency vehicles. Anyone doing this will receive a parking ticket.

“We would encourage anyone who receives a parking ticket to talk to us through the appeals process and we will consider genuine mitigations as part of this process.

“Regrettably Deborah has chosen not to speak to use since receiving her first ticket in 2018, but we would welcome a conversation with her.”

Nottinghamshire Live contacted First Parking for comment.


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