Hospi­tal park­ing earns trust £1.7m

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - FRONT PAGE - by Mike Ben­nett

THE East Kent Hos­pi­tals NHS Trust has raked in £1.68 mil­lion in park­ing charges over the last year in what has been branded “a tax on the sick”.

Read­ers seek­ing in­for­ma­tion from decades past

HALF a cen­tury ago an of­fice at the junc­tion of New­town Road – where Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional sta­tion link road now runs – was a hive of ac­tiv­ity as the Bri­tish Rail dis­trict en­gi­neers base, play­ing a key role in Kent’s trans­port net­work. But as this pic­ture shows, the se­ri­ous staff who held great re­spon­si­bil­ity al­ways turned into a fun-lov­ing group at off-duty events.

County Ho­tel

Many re­mem­ber the cel­e­bra­tion par­ties, in­clud­ing Ge­orge and Janet Shoubridge now liv­ing in re­tire­ment in Mead­ow­brook Road, Ken­ning­ton, who loaned us this pic­ture from the past. It was taken in 1952 at the County Ho­tel when they gath­ered for a fancy dress Christ­mas party. A New­town lad, Ge­orge was a clerk and Janet, then Miss El­len­der from Wye, a typ­ist and it was at work that the cou­ple met and mar­ried. For the party, he is pic­tured on the floor in front dressed as Big Chief Run­ning Wa­ter and she is seated in front in Aus­trian na­tional cos­tume. Now the cou­ple are seek­ing to make con­tact with other staff who worked in the of­fices, which even­tu­ally closed in 1967. They can be con­tacted on 01233 636351.

The Bri­tish Rail en­gi­neers party at the County Ho­tel in 1952

Could you rake up a pic­ture from the past which you would be will­ing to share? Phone Mike Ben­nett on 01233 623232, or send them to Re­mem­ber When, Ken­tish Ex­press, Ex­press House, 3436 North Street, Ash­ford, TN24 8JR.

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