March 15, 2016 at 12:53 pm
A petition*, calling for the reinstatement of a bus service for Callington Road Hospital in South Bristol, has been submitted by BIMHN and Brislington West councillor Eileen Means for discussion at tonight’s Full Council meeting.
Over 330 signatures have been gathered in total – on both paper and online – for the petition, which highlights to Bristol mayor George Ferguson and Bristol City Council the current lack of transport at the site, which serves people with mental health problems.
In addition to the petition, statements (including from BIMHN’s secretary and campaigns officer) have also been submitted to the council, urging for a regular bus service to be reintroduced, and for more parity of esteem between mental and physical health.
Since First terminated the number 36 in March 2015, and Avon and Wiltshire Partnership Trust withdrew its free bus shortly after, there has been no regular service stopping directly outside the hospital.
The service was withdrawn by First on the grounds that it was the “worst performing bus service” in Bristol due to it getting stuck at the nearby Tesco roundabout.
A number of buses stop near the site, but require users to walk along a main road and through a poorly lit wooded area, which Avon and Somerset Police has actively discouraged people to walk though in low light.
BIMHN says that it is frustrating that no-one is willing to take responsibility for the lack of service to the site, and that the situation would not be tolerated if it was a hospital serving patients with physical illness.
A number of recommendations have been put forward by BIMHN in the petition:
- Bristol City Council to conduct a review for providing a new bus stop near Callington Road Hospital before the Tesco to act as an incentive for public transport companies to increase services along Callington Road;
- Install a new bus stop before or after the roundabout and make it fully accessible;
- For a key stakeholder meeting to be arranged with support from Bristol City Council before the end of April 2016 to outline progress and resolve any issues that still need to be addressed;
- Effectively market and advertise transport to the site from a variety of providers and locations to increase future use;
- Explore providing dated bus passes to patients of Callington Road which provide discounted travel on certain routes;
- A full cost/benefit analysis and rationale to be provided by AWP on the closure of the free bus service;
- For the Equality Impact Assessment for the closure of the AWP free bus service to be provided;
- When re-evaluating transport strategies and provision at regular intervals, ensure that patient representative groups are consulted before decisions are taken on route changes.
- For organisations to regularly engage with patient representative groups including BIMHN to review the provision of effective mental health services and access to them.
- For the current walk way to be maintained and made more accessible through the installation of lights, surveillance or any other appropriate measures.
Full Council is taking place at 6pm on 15th March 2016 at the Gloucestershire County Cricket Club in Nevil Road, Bishopston.
*Please note that this petition is no longer available to sign due to it being submitted to council.
March 15, 2016 at 12:53 pm | News | No comment