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New parking charges for patients and visitors at West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust

Posted: 2 August 2021

Picture comprising pictures of the three hospital sites at the trust

After more than a year with free parking for patients and visitors, the trust which manages Hemel Hempstead Hospital, St Albans City Hospital and Watford General Hospital, has reintroduced charges from Monday 2 August 2021.

Charges were waived due to the pandemic and the costs of providing hospital parking were funded – temporarily – by central government. The funding regime changed some time ago and, following other trusts in the country, charges are now back in place.

During the pause, the trust has reviewed charges imposed by other hospitals in the region and also local parking rates. The review has resulted in these charges:


Paddy Hennessy, the trust’s director of environment, said: "We have held off for longer than many other trusts before re-imposing parking charges, but the fact is that parking is not free; there are staff, lighting, parking machines and land costs.

"Patients and visitors who need to come to our hospitals more frequently are entitled to free parking."

Those who can claim free parking at the trust include:

He added: "We are developing a green travel plan which we hope will encourage people to consider alternatives to driving to get to our hospitals, where possible.

"Also, our clinical strategy is geared towards reducing the number of visits patients need to make, either by providing online or telephone consultations or by combining several steps of their treatment within the same appointment. And we continue to focus on reducing the length of time inpatients stay with us and work with our health partners to prevent admission altogether by providing care more locally."

A travel and access steering group and a reference group are being set up as part of the trust’s redevelopment programme. Anyone interested in joining should email

A new multi-storey car park is set to open at Watford General Hospital in spring 2022. It will have pay on exit technology, bridge links and lifts linking it directly to future hospital buildings and improved lighting. It will also have charging points for electric vehicles and a higher ratio of spaces for blue badge holders. The car park will have spaces for staff, patients and the residents of the Watford Riverwell development.

Further details on the multi-storey car park are available here.


  1. For more information, please contact the communications team on: 01923 436280 or email: Out of hours, please call the Watford General Hospital switchboard on 01923 244366 and ask for the on call communications manager.
  2. West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust serves people from across Hertfordshire, north London and further afield. It operates from three hospitals; Watford General, St Albans City and Hemel Hempstead. The trust has a catchment area of over 500,000 people and is one of the largest employers locally, with around 5,000 staff and volunteers.
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