PARKING charges are to change at Bedford Hospital, offering more discounts and concessions for patients who have to visit the site regularly. The new fees, which come into force on 1 August mean the lowest parking charge - for a 30-minute stay - will increase from £1.40 to £2, while stays of up to seven hours will cost £6, up from £5.20. However, the cost of a weekly ticket will decrease from £10 to £9. The changes cover all three carparks in Kempston Road, Ampthill Road and Britannia Road. Director of nursing and patient services, Eiri Jones, said: "Despite the tariff increases, we still offer one of the cheapest minimum charges for parking, but we know - particularly in these difficult economic times - that any extra expense for patients and visitors is likely to cause frustration. Because of this we have tried to ease the burden on those who visit the hospital most frequently by reducing our weekly ticket charge to £9, making the daily cost of parking less than £2."