ANPR causes jams at theatre car park
Automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) may have some advantages over the old pay-and-display system, but that didn’t impress the lady from Thanet who sat next to me at the Marlowe Theatre last Saturday.
She had deliberately avoided parking in the Pound Lane car park because she knew that when all the people pour out of the theatre at the end of the performance and need to pay at the machine, the delay would be quite horrendous. It would also bother me that with no attendant present, should the barrier fail to operate, I would be trapped in the car park! This faulty barrier situation happened to my wife at the William Harvey hospital only this week, but they have a resident parking attendant there who soon solved the problem.
I fail to see why the Kent & Canterbury Hospital has also recently spent a considerable sum investing in ANPR for its public car parks, which are now halfempty due to the continued running down of services there.
I can only assume that, with the dire financial situation that public services are experiencing at present, the sales pitch of the companies selling these ANPR systems must be how much money could be saved in the long run. Mike Armstrong Queens Avenue, Canterbury
You have asked for views about the proposed extension to the ticketless parking scheme in Canterbury, Herne Bay and Whitstable.
It is inevitable that schemes of this sort will become increasingly common; it is the way forward and has many advantages but the rights of blue badge holders are being ignored.
The current scheme in Pound Lane requires blue badge holders to pay while previously they had free access to the spaces in that car park. If all car parks in Canterbury became barrier- and cameracontrolled then the rights of the blue badge holder are seriously affected.
There are a few areas in the city where only blue badge holders have access, Iron Bar Lane, behind the Beaney for example, but to restrict choice to those with limited mobility is cruel for it will require longer walking distances. It will also inevitably lead to more congestion in those areas as blue badge holders are crammed into the fewer spaces offered.
Those with blue badges are exempt from the London congestion charge and many vehicles are exempt from the Dartford Crossing Charge. It is surely possible to adapt the parking scheme in a similar way to the benefit of the local disabled community. Canterbury has a reputation as being ‘disabled unfriendly’.
Shopping in Ashford, particularly the outlet centre, or Folkestone is much more attractive to wheelchair users. Please do not make Canterbury even more discriminatory. Nick Hunt Stelling Minnis This view of St Peter’s Church in Canterbury was taken by our chief reporter, Gerry Warren when disturbed, thus it was called in Kent the pillbug or peabug.
There are species of woodlouse, however, that do not roll into a ball but run when exposed.
In medieval times the pillbug/peabug was swallowed alive when rolled up, supposedly to cure various health ailments.
Alternatively, live bugs were placed in a lock-type box and hung around the neck in the same belief to cure.
In Kent, the common woodlouse was also known as the peasie bug, monkey pea, cheese bug and slater depending on the area.
As stated, some of these are still in use. Alan Major Author, A New Dictionary of Kent Dialect, Heaton Road, Canterbury
Little of comfort was heard from the management team from the NHS Trust. We heard of a series of sticking-plaster solutions, a lot of management speak and saw intelligible charts and graphs (most 10-year-olds could make better charts), but very little human-speak.
The mood in the meeting room was that the people of east Kent have had enough of platitudes, excuses and cries that there is no money. Other trusts perform many times better and they too face enormous financial pressures.
East Kent is being treated as a poor relation by government. The buck does not stop with the local management and board or with civil servants in Whitehall. It stops with the Secretary of State and the Prime Minister. The Conservatives have lost Canterbury. They may lose other east Kent seats if the NHS continues to fail people in Canterbury and across east Kent.
Does Jeremy Hunt have the courage to come down to Canterbury to explain to the people why things have reached this sorry state and what he is doing to rectify the position? Let’s see if he has the courage of his convictions. Let’s see if he has the courage to face the taxpayers of east Kent, who are being so badly served? One has a feeling that if these failings had occurred in Maidenhead, where Mrs May has her seat, or in Mr Hunt’s South West Surrey constituency, action by government would have been swift and deep. Martin Roche Canterbury & Coastal Liberal Democrats, Stuppington Court Farm, Canterbury
Please may I through your paper thank those who attended the public meeting in Canterbury on Saturday.
It was arranged for the east Kent hospitals trust and the local Clinical Commissioning group to allow them to apologise for the state they have left our hospital services in. There were of course no apologies, or explanation of when they are going to return our services back to the K&C, just the bland propaganda that dribbles from the mouths of at least some of them.
Let’s be clear, the huge pressure on the other two hospitals can be easily reduced along with those A&E waiting times by utilising the K&C and returning or centralising some of those acute services that have moved there.
But it’s not all about those acute waiting times, it’s also about cancelled outpatients appointments, if you are lucky enough to get one in the first place. With operations cancelled and follow-up appointments being fought for it does not give confidence to patients or their families.
We do need to remember that the K&C does not just serve the patients from Canterbury – all of the patients of east Kent may need its specialist services, such as renal or vascular.
This will be the last public meeting in Canterbury for a while as we will be holding information meetings around east Kent, including in the coastal areas.
We are also keen to hear from patient groups on their concerns so please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are adjusting our page and would ask that all of you on our Facebook group join or rejoin our page so we can keep you up to date with meetings, etc, so please log into this page and keep the details so you are getting the correct information.
www.savethekentandcanterbury.org Ken Rogers Chairman, Concern for Health in East Kent, Lower Road, Faversham