FURIOUS staff about to start working at the new Forth Valley Royal Hospital have slammed health bosses over parking allocation problems.
The Observer understands that dozens of people who applied for parking permits at the £300 million Larbert hospital have been refused.
That means many workers will be parking in the streets nearby the hospital just to get to work in time because of the lack of buses or other public transport – potentially risking their own safety on dark mornings and evenings.
Agnes Wood from Fallin, a domestic at Stirling Royal Infirmary for more than 25 years, told us: "My shifts start at 6am, but the first bus service of the day to Larbert wouldn’t get me there in time.
"Everyone applied for permits and we were told that it wouldn’t be a problem, but that’s clearly not the case now."
She explained that at SRI, staff are given permits but not an allocated space and believes that the same should apply at FVRH.
"I give a lift to three other people to work at the hospital and that means I am saving four car parking spaces," added Agnes.
"Instead, I will now have to park in Larbert and take a 20 minute walk and there are risks to my personal safety because of the hours I work.
"Every hospital needs it cleaners and other staff to keep it going, otherwise it just won’t work."
A member of the catering staff who travels in from the Wee County claims that none of the catering, domestics, security, porters or switchboard staff got a permit.
She added: "Is this safe at 2am for a female worker on health and safety grounds? I wouldn't like to do it personally.
"It’s inevitable what's going to happen here, the town of Larbert is going to become the hospital’s extended car park and the residents will rightly have plenty to complain about it."
A spokesperson for NHS Forth Valley said: "All staff working at the new hospital were able to apply for a car parking permit and each application was assessed on an individual basis using an evaluation system which was developed in partnership with staff and their representatives.
"We appreciate that some staff were disappointed that their application was not successful, however, it was simply not possible to issue a permit to every member of staff who applied.
"To improve public transport for staff and patients, we have also invested in a range of new bus services which will provide links to the hospital."
lAre you affected by the parking allocation? Contact the Observer on email@example.com or write to us at 34 Upper Craigs, Stirling, FK8 2DW.