I WRITE in response to the article, Free hospital shuttle bus plan (Mail, July 12) and Kevin Oxley’s comments regarding the provision of bus services that will be provided for patients and visitors to the University Hospital of North Tees.
Does this service also apply to residents from outlying districts, eg Blackhall, Horden, Peterlee, East Durham, etc?
This is not a gift. It will be funded by NHS money, a further drain on resources that should be spent on patient care and medication.
How much will this all cost us, the taxpayers and will it eventually fall upon the local authority to fund it yet again, like the previous free buses from Hartlepool to North Tees?
They are not free as you should know. They are being paid for through our council tax.
Therefore we are paying twice. The working population penalised yet again.
Then there is all this talk about this ivory tower of power, Tees Valley, an imaginary valley beside the River Tees.
There is no such place as Tees Valley on the map.
You will recall, Mr Oxley, that I was the only councillor on the planning committee who voted against the proposed new hospital to be built at Wynyard, on the grounds of the traffic congestion problems on the A19.
I also stated at that time: “The residents of Hartlepool and outlying districts were not against a new hospital but against the location. We have plenty of land at Middle Warren and the people would welcome that.”
I was assured by you, Mr Oxley, after the meeting that my concerns had been noted, and while you acknowledged and recognised the problems regarding the A19 they would be addressed (I had visions of an extra lane for ambulance and emergency vehicles only, travelling north and south on the A19 for access to this new wonder hospital).
To date no progress or action whatsoever has been taken regarding the addressing of any congestion and traffic problems relating to any improvements on the A19.
I am now beginning to wonder if we, the residents of Hartlepool, live in an imaginary town like Tees Valley.
But all is not lost. We can all sleep safely in our beds at night.
We have been assured by the powers that be that a bus will be provided, paid for by us.
Personally I would rather spend my money on an air ambulance which I do support and truly believe should be given money by the NHS for their excellent services.
We are going to need far more of them when the A19 becomes gridlocked yet again.
Councillor Edna Wright,