Coronavirus: How you can help make life easier for Portsmouth key workers with a parking buddy scheme

A PAIR of Portsmouth sisters are calling on neighbours to help save key workers the stress of finding a parking space during the coronavirus pandemic.

Friday, 27th March 2020, 4:02 pm
Updated Monday, 30th March 2020, 1:30 pm
QA nurse Victoria Jones is backing the parking buddies scheme. Picture Victoria Jones

Southsea resident Katie Simms is asking neighbours to take part in a parking buddy scheme after hearing about her QA nurse sister's struggles when she lived in North End.

If enough people get involved Katie is hoping each road in Portsmouth can 'buddy up' a key worker with someone who is staying at home. The idea is the key worker can call their buddy if they can't find a space who will offer their bay and find somewhere else.

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Katie Simms hopes to set up a parking buddy system to help key workers in Portsmouth park more easily. Picture Katie Simms

Operation support manager Katie, 33, has been working at home since lockdown. She said: 'We all know how frustrating it is in Portsmouth when trying to find a space. And you imagine that in the situation they're going through - especially if they've worked really long shifts?

Katie lives within the recently implemented ME parking zone. However, this week the city council announced it would postpone all charges on parking in zones, on streets and in council car parks.

'Since this has been going on I think the roads are actually getting busier and busier,' she said.

'This is the least we can do to help each other out. It makes no difference to me if I have to move my car 15 minutes away, but it might make all the difference to a QA worker who just wants to get home.'

Her sister Victoria Jones, who now lives in Hayling Island, supported the idea. The 32-year-old respiratory nurse said: 'When I lived in North End I could be driving around for 20 minutes trying to find somewhere to park and then have to walk far to get home. Part of the reason I moved to Hayling was because of parking.

'I know that staff at QA are having a really tough time at the moment. If we can do anything to help them we should.'

If you would like to be involved in the parking buddy scheme please email Katie at [email protected] with your road name and whether you are a key worker or a buddy.