Further measures may be taken at Parkway car park in Bury St Edmunds after third incident

Police at the scene of the incident at the Parkway multi-storey car park in Bury St Edmunds on Novem

Police at the scene of the incident at the Parkway multi-storey car park in Bury St Edmunds on November 13, 2014. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Further measures may be taken at a multi-storey car park in Bury St Edmunds after a third incident in just over three months.

St Edmundsbury Borough Council has been working with the police and the Samaritans charity after Long Melford butcher Oliver Ruse and Patricia Hopkins, from near Hadleigh, died after they fell from the car park in Parkway in separate incidents in November last year.

Yesterday morning police helped a woman in distress at the car park, which is operated by the borough council, and she is now safe.

Signs by the Samaritans went up there in mid December, and more measures to try and prevent further incidents happening may be put in place, such as railings.

A council spokesman said: “We have been working with partners including the Samaritans and the police and the car park is under an ongoing review. Unfortunately each of these incidents merely highlights the car park to those vulnerable people who may be considering taking their own lives. We will not be commenting further at this stage.”


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Jenny Vereker, director of the Bury branch of the Samaritans, said talks were also ongoing with mental health services.

“We are all having talks as to how we deal with this in the best possible way. There is some talk about whether we do or don’t put up railings, but decisions haven’t yet been made.”

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She added the charity may help to train staff at the cark park to assist if they come across this situation.

The signs there ask people to contact the Samaritans if “things are getting to you”.

Mrs Vereker said: “Obviously it’s really sad somebody feels that low they need to do this. Our phone numbers are there and we are available 24/7 for people to talk to.”

She added: “We just want to highlight the fact we are here. We are non-judgemental and we listen and nothing will shock or surprise us. We are well-trained.”

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said: “Police in Bury St Edmunds were called at 8.30am yesterday morning to reports of a woman in distress at the Parkway multi-storey car park.

“Officers responded immediately and the situation was successfully resolved at around 9am. The woman is now safe and receiving medical assistance.

“The multi-storey car park complies with all safety standards but police are continuing to work with partner agencies around the issues raised by such incidents.”

Inquests have been opened into the deaths of Ms Hopkins and Mr Ruse.

•To get in touch with the Samaritans call 08457 90 90 90 or the local number 01284 750 000. They can also be emailed at jo@samaritans.org

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