Kettering General Hospital has apologised for the traffic issues on its site as work continues to create more parking spaces.
The Northants Telegraph has been contacted by dozens of people who have experienced problems trying to park at the hospital since a number of changes were introduced.
One of the main entrances off Rothwell Road has become a red route for emergency vehicles only, with public access moving to the Telford Way roundabout via Haweswater Road.
This has caused traffic to frequently back up on Rothwell Road, sometimes all the way to the junction with the A14.
And with cars queuing to leave the hospital site too, vehicles are sometimes unable to leave Car Park B.
There have been complaints too about patients missing appointments because of the reduced number of drop-off spaces near to A&E and the outpatients department.
On our Facebook page Rose Byrne said: “I attempted to park at the hospital earlier in the week and it was the worst I’ve ever known it.
“We were told by a parking man to ‘keep the flow of traffic’ moving... There was just no chance!
“I felt terribly sorry for the lady in the car in front of me who had a very elderly man in the car with her and asked for a disabled space.
“To which she was simply told ‘there are none, move on’...”
Linda Herbert said: “You can’t park at the bottom any more. My friend went to pick up her mum and had to push her wheelchair up to the car park.”
Lisa Padgett said: “It’s absolutely horrendous. My son is there three days a week for treatment currently and its just ridiculous, takes so long to access and find a space.”
Amanda Allthorpe said: “I’ve been caught up in the gridlock that’s come about because of the change, trying to make deliveries to the housing estate.
“I feel for the people that live there. Queuing for 15/20 minutes to get to your own house. I’d be jumping through hoops if that was me. Total shambles!”
Karen Crowe said: “The barrier let me into car park A, but there were no spaces and I then had to queue to get out of the hospital grounds!
“The traffic was all backed up on the roundabout on the main road with people queuing to get into the hospital.”
Ann Humphreys said: “I’s still a nightmare parking, and the other day because the queue was out on to the main road I was stopped turning right into Car Park B.
“I had to follow the road round the roundabout and come back round, as did those following me, then it was a queue to turn left into B, but then I was told I was blocking people leaving the site.”
Teresa Norman said: “I was there on Tuesday and it was horrendous. On my way out of the hospital I witnessed an ambulance stuck in the traffic with flashing lights trying to exit the hospital obviously going to an emergency.
“The car park attendants were shouting at people to move out the way but they literally had no where to move to as it was gridlocked.”
Tallie Vanzwanenberg said: “We were extremely lucky today, arrived at 9.40am and got into the car park with no queue!
“Whatever they do it’s going to be a struggle but I must admit I was very impressed with the red zone for ambulances (even though I saw three cars cut through it).”
Nerissa Haimes said: “I love the new layout of the entrance – well done, about time I say. “Parking is an issue but at least they have a plan to try to improve it.”
Jackie Findlay said: “Absolute nightmare as usual. I had to park at the gym and push my husband in his wheelchair all the way there and back.
“He ended up covered in mud as he tried to help me, as I have a heart problem!”
Karen Gilbert said: “It’s horrendous when trying to pick up elderly parents who struggle to walk. You should be allowed to pick up at the door.”
Kettering General Hospital deputy director of estates Craig Catterick said: “The trust is currently working through a car parking plan that will bring 240 additional patient spaces to the site and which should help to reduce the congestion which we know is the cause of significant frustration for patients and visitors.
“We have received planning permission from Kettering Council to do this by adding a single storey car parking deck to Car Park B.
“However, the construction of the decking will take time to carefully plan and execute and so is still some months away.
“In the meantime we have created an ambulance-only red route to improve safety and have removed some drop-off bays close to outpatients/A&E.
“This is to ensure this area is used by emergency and non-emergency (patient transport services) ambulances only.
“For those with mobility issues we have instituted a ramp from Car Park A for wheelchair access and have put some additional disabled spaces into this car park – with more to come when we do the final remarking to coincide with the opening of the expanded Car Park B.
“We have also already remarked a sizeable drop-off zone in Car Park A which can be used by volunteer drivers.
“We are aware queuing remains an issue into Car Park A and into Car Park B and we apologise for this.
“However, it should be noted that at peak times this has been an issue for many months.
“We are progressing the beneficial changes to Car Park A and B as quickly as we are able and would ask local people to bear with us.”