Last January I was shocked after I attended a clinic at the Royal Hospital in Chesterfield when I was asked to pay £2.10 for less than an hour’s stay in the disabled car park .
I had no money with me but fortunately my carer had some change.
I had five years’ active service on three continents and spent not one night in the sick bay or hospital.
During 1947 to 1949 I was on government service in Germany as a Lieutenant Colonel and spent no time in the sick bay or hospital.
Now when I have become blind, in addition to my war disability, I have to pay to park!
I have spoken to several younger people including a young lady who parked on the road and walked in pain to A&E because she is in a low paid job and didn’t know what the parking fee would be.
I cannot walk from the road and I have to be wheeled from the car park to the hospital. This is unequal treatment and I believe it breaches the Equally Act 2010.
Five years ago, I wrote in the “DT” about a year-long survey I organised about the meals at the Royal, and 90 per cent of the responses to the question about the quality of the food was “ poor”.
No notice was taken of the letter but I had written to the Care Quality Commission and their report on the food said the food was not nourishing, unappetising and poorly presented.
Our MP Toby Perkins and I had a meeting with the Royal’s CEO and a phalanx of managers who denied the facts.
I wanted the food cooked locally and not in the Cardiff factory and brought every night in a lorry with the noxious gases from its engine. Chesterfield needs the jobs and local traders and farmers need the business.
It is about time the elected governors bared their teeth and fought for the people of this area.
Charles R Smith MBE
Yew Tree Drive, Chesterfield