A new parking system has been installed this month at Saundersfoot Medical Centre, to combat inconsiderate parking which has escalated at the facility in recent months.
Patients and visitors to the surgery will be able to park for up to an hour with no charge at the facility’s car park, and do not have to register your car or display a ticket.
If anyone’s attendance at the surgery goes beyond this time frame, they will need to speak to reception to ensure they do not receive a fine.
Outside of surgery hours there will be a pay and display mobile app in order to pay for parking, which will be £3 an evening on a weekday and £5 a day at weekends.
The parking system will be completely managed by the company installing this and any issues should go directly to the company and not to the surgery.
“It is regrettable that we have had to go down this route but hopefully this will now allow our patients to park when attending the surgery,” said a spokesperson for the Centre.
County councillor for Saundersfoot’s south ward Chris Williams commented: “For many years the Medical Centre has kindly let local residents, or visiting tourists, use their car park when the Medical Centre has been closed. Unfortunately, over the years the problem has arisen of visitors and local residents using this facility as a means of free parking before heading to the village.
“The team has tried incredibly hard over the years, leaving notices and speaking with individuals who constantly abuse their good will and things have escalated this summer. With limited parking in the village, when the Centre is open on Monday morning there are nearly twenty cars parked up.
“More recently a business on the Strand had its employees parking at the centre on a daily basis. This simply isn’t good enough. All patients who come to the surgery should have the right to park. Unfortunately, when patients have been turning up recently there isn’t sufficient parking available,” he continued.
Cllr Williams said that the practice manager had told him: “The priority for doing this is to ensure we have parking spaces available for our patients, but I anticipate some backlash from people that think they have a right to be able to park in the surgery.
“This system will also include some element of pay and display in the evenings and weekends so that anyone that does utilise the parking out of hours can still do so. This decision hasn’t been taken lightly but all the other options to try and protect the parking for our patients have not succeeded.”
With the surgery holding a flu jab session at the Regency Hall on September 30 from 8 am to 1 pm, Cllr Williams said he would seek permission from Saundersfoot Community Council to park at the rear of the tennis courts, to assist.
“If this is acceptable there will be limited parking for the time it takes to have your flu jab and proceed back to your car,” he added.