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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 January 2006, 21:54 GMT
Hospital to employ parking valets
Yeovil District Hospital is to introduce the use of valets to try to solve its parking problems.

Under the new system, visitors and patients would hand over their keys when they get to the car park.

The fully-insured operators would park the car in one of the hospital's 148 spaces and return it at an agreed time.

The East Somerset NHS Trust says it is considering more long-term solutions including building a 2m multi-storey car park.

John Ward, from the trust, said: "Car parking is a major problem at the hospital and we recognised that some tough decisions were needed to ensure we can continue to accommodate growing numbers of patients and visitors."

Long-stay parking

Trust chairman Angela Dupont added: "We have received good feedback so far to our plans for valet parking. The number of people using the top-performing hospital is constantly growing, and most arrive by car."

The valet service could start within the next six to nine months.

The trust has also announced that it will increase parking charges at the hospital to discourage long-stay parking.

The charges range from 1.50 for an hour to 8 for seven hours and above.

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