Ditch the car to work, urge health officials

Parking charges should be increased to encourage more people to walk, health officials have advised.

Hiking parking fees will encourage people to walk, say health officials Credit: CHRIS YOUNG/PA Archive

Employers along with local authorities and the NHS should consider restricting the amount of parking they offer or hiking prices in order to restrain the public's car usage.

The advice was part of a new guidance published by The National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice), an independent organisation which sets national health standards, to get more people active.

In the guidance it said: "One way of encouraging people to walk or cycle, as a form of transport, might be to apply greater levels of restraint on car usage in urban areas.

"This could be achieved, for instance, by introducing restricted parking and higher parking charges."

But chief executive of the Tax Payer's Alliance Matthew Sinclair said the "meddling health bureaucrats" were out of touch with struggling families.

He said: "For more people using the car is a necessity, not a luxury."