JR bus route is ‘not ideal’

Diane Maudling

Diane Maudling

First published in Bicester by

A NEW bus service connecting Bicester with Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital is leaving patient visitors hanging around for hours.

Stagecoach unveiled its 11 Gold buses and launched a new direct route to the Headington hospital this month, cutting round trip journey times by about an hour.

But pensioner Diane Maudling, who initially welcomed the direct bus, said the service does not cater for patients or their visitors.

All three buses running directly between Bicester and the hospital leave the town before 9am, five-and-a-half hours before visiting hours start.

The three direct return buses leave the hospital between 3.35pm and 5.45pm.

Mrs Maudling, of Longfields, Bicester, said: “It’s a good service for workers, but it’s no use for people visiting the hospital.

“The buses don’t connect with clinic appointments and visiting hours.

“I’m really rather disappointed. I thought the new direct service was going to benefit the patients, but it doesn’t.

“I think another bus leaving Bicester at lunchtime would be a real benefit.”

The later services to the John Radcliffe Hospital include a change of bus in Summertown and the round trip can take almost three hours.

Mrs Maudling also called for direct buses to be implemented at the weekend.

Stagecoach spokesman Chris Child said the firm would look at the demand for services.

He said: “The new journeys from Bicester to the John Radcliffe are primarily for people who live in Bicester and work at the JR.

“These have been timed in co-ordination with the hospital to try to fit the working patterns of as many people as possible.

“Passengers can also make connections between route S5 and 14 around Summertown, providing regular journeys through to the hospital.

“The investment in newer buses, which run more frequently, plus these direct services has been a big investment in Bicester.

“We are monitoring the service closely and if there is sufficient demand then we would consider expanding even further.”

Comments (5)

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8:25pm Tue 31 Jan 12

snert says...

Sure this is the crux of the reasoning behind the service...

Stagecoach spokesman Chris Child said the firm would look at the demand for services.

"...He said: “The new journeys from Bicester to the John Radcliffe are primarily for people who live in Bicester and WORK at the JR.

“These have been timed in co-ordination with the hospital to try to fit the working patterns of as many people as possible..."

Get on the normal bus to Oxford at a time more suited to you and then get a connecting bus.

I feel the public transport system in this country, although run for the public, is aimed at serving as many as possible. If there isn't a route that suits you, you find alternative means.

I'd like a bus to my office but getting from my village to the delightful sunny climes of Slough is also rather unlikely.
Sure this is the crux of the reasoning behind the service... Stagecoach spokesman Chris Child said the firm would look at the demand for services. "...He said: “The new journeys from Bicester to the John Radcliffe are primarily for people who live in Bicester and WORK at the JR. “These have been timed in co-ordination with the hospital to try to fit the working patterns of as many people as possible..." Get on the normal bus to Oxford at a time more suited to you and then get a connecting bus. I feel the public transport system in this country, although run for the public, is aimed at serving as many as possible. If there isn't a route that suits you, you find alternative means. I'd like a bus to my office but getting from my village to the delightful sunny climes of Slough is also rather unlikely. snert
  • Score: 0

8:40pm Tue 31 Jan 12

Andrew:Oxford says...

Well, it's a start.

An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route.

Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind.
Well, it's a start. An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route. Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: 0

9:32pm Tue 31 Jan 12

Gunslinger says...

Andrew:Oxford wrote:
Well, it's a start.

An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route.

Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind.
No freebies for OAP's before 9 am.
[quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: Well, it's a start. An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route. Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind.[/p][/quote]No freebies for OAP's before 9 am. Gunslinger
  • Score: 0

9:44pm Tue 31 Jan 12

Andrew:Oxford says...

Gunslinger wrote:
Andrew:Oxford wrote:
Well, it's a start.

An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route.

Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind.
No freebies for OAP's before 9 am.
Ah well...

That will be the main reason for the complaint about the lack of departures - they have to pay!
[quote][p][bold]Gunslinger[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andrew:Oxford[/bold] wrote: Well, it's a start. An arrival for 8.47am is definitely incredibly handy for some 9am(ish) clinic appointments without the stress of changing buses en-route. Although, it would be terrible if the bus ended up so full of pensioners on a direct freebie that staff were left behind.[/p][/quote]No freebies for OAP's before 9 am.[/p][/quote]Ah well... That will be the main reason for the complaint about the lack of departures - they have to pay! Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: 0

1:10pm Thu 2 Feb 12

rayroad says...

If you are a pensioner (I am not) then spending three hours travelling for an appointment is no joke and waiting around in freezing temperatures between buses is no joke either. You are also unlikley in many cases to be able to afford driving lessons or to run a car. Getting a taxi from Bicester to Oxford and back would cost over £20. If you have to go regularly then this really isn't viable for someone relying on a state pension. These people have paid taxes all their lives in most cases so give them a break.

If some of the comments above are indicative of Mr Cameron's caring 'Big Society' then you can stuff it............
If you are a pensioner (I am not) then spending three hours travelling for an appointment is no joke and waiting around in freezing temperatures between buses is no joke either. You are also unlikley in many cases to be able to afford driving lessons or to run a car. Getting a taxi from Bicester to Oxford and back would cost over £20. If you have to go regularly then this really isn't viable for someone relying on a state pension. These people have paid taxes all their lives in most cases so give them a break. If some of the comments above are indicative of Mr Cameron's caring 'Big Society' then you can stuff it............ rayroad
  • Score: 0

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