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Bus service switch at hospital a tonic!

Posted onPosted on 21st Dec

Two bus stops introduced in the grounds of King’s Mill Hospital have proved to be just the ticket for patients, visitors, and staff.

They mean passengers can be dropped off closer to the main entrance of the Sutton hospital.

Previously, passengers on the Stagecoach East Midlands number 1 bus service had to use a bus stop on Sutton Road and then walk 200m to the hospital’s main entrance.

The number 1 service takes customers from Huthwaite to Mansfield Woodhouse every 10 minutes, seven days a week. Stagecoach said the change has seen a 50% increase in passengers using the service to travel to hospital since the new bus stops were introduced.

The move is thanks to a partnership between Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which operates the hospital, Nottinghamshire County Council, and Stagecoach East Midlands.

Matt Cranwell, managing director of Stagecoach East Midlands, said: “We have improved the bus service experience for staff, patients, and visitors by serving the

King’s Mill Hospital site. This has been complimented by new bus shelter facilities with real-time information and traffic light priority to allow smooth access for our Miller service.

“This a great demonstration of partnership working to improve bus services for the local community.”

Thanks to funding from the Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP), Nottinghamshire County Council has upgraded traffic light signals at the two entry and exit points at the hospital to give priority to bus services. Bus drivers communicate their position and punctuality of service to the urban traffic control centre, which then triggers specific traffic lights to green to reduce delays and keep buses running on time.

Coun Neil Clarke, cabinet member for Transport and Environment at the county council, added: “Our work to provide high-quality, solar-powered bus stop facilities is a great example of our commitment to the environment and I am thrilled that we have been able to work with our partners to deliver this scheme to benefit passengers and patients.”

The council has provided two, fully-accessible bus shelters with seating for up to six passengers, plus space for wheelchair users.

The bus stops have been made possible thanks to a combination of funds from Sherwood Forest Hospitals Trust and the council’s Green Investment Fund. To complement the zero carbon ambitions of the trust, the council ensured that the displays are 100% solar powered with battery storage.

Paul Robinson, chief executive of the health trust, said: “It will benefit those who are less able to walk and take away anxiety around missing appointments. It’s also great news for colleagues and means they can finish their shift without the stress of having to run to make their bus home.”