IT is understandable that there are parking meters in and around the city centre, both to discourage commuter parking and to encourage the use of public transport.

If people still want to drive their car into the city centre for work, leisure or shopping then there will be a cost attached.

For some, though, who work in the city centre, the use of their car is essential and if that is for private business then that business will absorb the cost. If, however, they are providing a public service, it is understandable that they see the parking charges as unfair.

The Sandyford Surgery already pays for some full-time permits, but is having to pay out more for staff working on a temporary basis, wo provide service and who will also be out in the community.

Doctors and nurses working in other areas, where parking is not controlled by meters, will have the benefit of health centre car parks.

So, for those like the Sandyford, where the money used to pay for parking charges is coming from the public purse, it would seem reasonable for some compromise arrangement to be reached.

Whether it is a doctor-on-call sign, permits, exemptions or special rates, it can be recognised that the medics are not commuters or shoppers with the option of public transport.

Then they can get on with caring for people instead of worrying about feeding parking meters.