Stafford hospital bus service axed by Arriva
Buses will no longer run directly to County Hospital from Cannock after operator Arriva announced changes to services.
Patients and visitors will instead have to get onto a new shuttle bus to get to the hospital.
The number 74 from Cannock currently goes to Stafford’s County Hospital but that will stop from January when it will terminate in Stafford town centre.
Passengers wanting to go to the hospital will have to change to the new H shuttle service.
Arriva said the changes would ‘provide more frequent and reliable journeys to the hospital’, while improving the 74 route.
The H service will offer ‘prompt and swift connections to the hospital’, the company added.
However, the changes have caused concern among regular users of the service.
Chadsmoor resident Michelle Grant said: “Disgraceful! From where I live in Chadsmoor that’s three buses to Stafford Hospital.”
The changes will also impact on people in Lichfield, who will no longer be able to get the 825 directly to County Hospital.
Simon Mathieson, area managing director for Arriva Midlands North, said: “Our routes 74 and 825 currently offer intermittent journeys to the hospital.
“By introducing the dedicated H service we will not only be able to provide more frequent and reliable journeys designed specifically to offer prompt and swift connections to the hospital for those that need it, but it will also allow us to improve the punctuality on the 74 and 825 for all other customers.
“The H will operate every 15 minutes during off-peak Monday to Friday, half hourly at all other times during the day, enabling people to more effectively plan their journeys, and saving any infrequent passengers any unnecessary waiting time.
“The 74 and 825 will terminate from the same town bus stops to as the hospital shuttle to facilitate simple forward connections on to the H.”
Some are unimpressed with the changes.
Matt Stevens said on Facebook: “Good to see they are looking after the elderly and vulnerable passengers, who will need to change buses in Stafford.”