I went to see Peter Hendy, Commissioner of Transport for Transport for London – the big cheese – to present the postcard campaign for a new bus to serve the new health facility at Hornsey Hospital.
Miraculously – he said he would be willing to come personally and meet Haringey Health Trust to discuss the provision of public transport to the new facility. Hurrah! Score!
It was clear that Transport for London don’t think they should pay for all new public transport access – because in Mr Hendy’s view – Haringey PCT (Primary Care Trust) should have thought about the need for access before choosing the site.
Well – as someone who campaigned against Hornsey Hospital’s closure, against the taking away of the W2 bus route, and for a new facility for years – actually the site is the right place. However, I can see that there is an argument over why TfL should foot the total bill for any public transport now needed to serve it.
So – what I said to Mr Hendy was – well come and meet and perhaps you can go 50/50 on it. I don’t care which of you pays – what I do care about is that local people can get to the health centre easily.
The transport consultants that the PCT commissioned came up with a report that said that something like over half the people using the new centre would have journey’s of over 20 minutes and have to change buses. Every one knows that anyway. There isn’t a public meeting that I have been to about Hornsey Hospital where the issue of transport hasn’t been raised.
There are bus routes – but only one stop outside the hospital. The others leave a walk of over 400 metres – which if you are old or ill is too far – let alone those who have to change buses.
Anyway -chuffed with at least coming away with a promise to personally meet with local Trust and myself to thrash out what is needed and who will pay for it at least give us some hope.