Passengers will be welcomed aboard the 113 express, a new free bus service carrying visitors between hospitals in Dewsbury, Pontefract and Wakefield.
Service 113 will launch on Monday 21 July, taking patients and visitors between the three hospitals, seven days a week.
The new hourly express service came about as a result of feedback to the Meeting the Challenge consultation, and is being funded by the North Kirklees and Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Groups. Its aim is to make travelling between the hospitals easier, and has been set up following months of work between the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Tetleys Motor Services.
Kevin Oxley, Director of Operations; Clinical Support and Facilities, at The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The changes to hospital services will see more patients and visitors travelling between Dewsbury, Pinderfields and Pontefract to receive their care. During the consultation, people told us that they needed a convenient, reliable way of travelling between our three hospitals and this service aims to do precisely that.
“We are delighted to offer this new service, which we have commissioned in response to public feedback received during the consultation to ensure everyone can travel easily between our three main hospital sites for free.”
He added: “We have worked closely with our partners at West Yorkshire Combined Authority to set up this service and make travelling as simple and convenient as possible.”
The new timetable will operate hourly between 8am and 8pm Monday to Fridays and 1pm to 8pm Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays.
All minibuses on this free service will have low floors and will be fully accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs.
Wakefield Councillor Yvonne Crewe and Kirklees Councillor Eric Firth, who are members of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Committee, have both welcomed the new service.
“We’re pleased to have been able to help Mid Yorkshire Hospitals introduce this new service,” said Cllr Crewe. “It complements existing services, including the Pinderfields shuttle service we helped introduce in 2013.”
“This new service will make it easier for outpatients, visitors and staff to reach the Dewsbury and District Hospital,” said Cllr Firth. “It will also help them to make trips to other Mid Yorkshire hospitals, for free and without having to change bus along the way.”
Chris Dowse, Chief Officer for NHS North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Transport was a big issue for people when we consulted on the changes to hospital services which is why the governing bodies of Wakefield and North Kirklees CCGs made it a condition of our approval of the plans that the shuttle bus service should be extended.
“It is great to have an extended bus service, with full access for people with disabilities and for families, up and running before the changes take place. We hope this will make it easier for patients and visitors to travel between the sites.”
Timetables for service 113 and all other West Yorkshire bus services can be found at www.wymetro.com
Full details of the bus route, stops and timetables are available on the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust website http://www.midyorks.nhs.uk/main.cfm?type=PATIENTANDVISITORS
Details of Metro’s yournextbus real-time service and its @MetroTravelNews Twitter feed and West Yorkshire Metro Facebook page, giving live travel updates can also be found on the website.
Photo caption: (left to right) Kevin Oxley, The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust Director of Operations, Kirklees Councillor Eric Firth who is also a member of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Transport Committee and David Venner, Tetley’s Transport Manager.