'Bring back a park-and-ride hospital stop'
Sir Peter Soulsby has promised to look again at park-and-ride bus routes after health campaigners asked for a stop at Leicester Royal Infirmary.
Members of the Leicester Mercury Patients' Panel want the service to stop at the hospital – as it did when the Enderby park-and-ride service opened in 2009.
Sir Peter told panel members he would look again at the set up, which is run by the city and county councils.
He said: "When I first looked at this, about a year ago, it didn't seem as if it would make a significant impact on the number of people using it or the number of people parking at the infirmary to make it worth running the route by the hospital.
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"I am happy to look again at this and also how the Hospital Hopper service could be used in association with the service."
Park-and-ride passengers wanting to get to the infirmary, General or Glenfield hospital, currently have to get the park-and-ride to St Nicholas Circle, then change to the hopper service.
University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust has said it could not re-route the hopper because "very strict timings will not allow for this additional diversion".
Zuffar Haq, a member of the patients' panel, said: "About 2,000 patients a day have outpatient appointments at the infirmary.
"About half live in the county and many drive straight past the park-and-ride terminals to get into the city.
"There are an increasing number of elderly patients and we want to make it easier for them and others to get to their appointments.
"The cost of parking at the hospital and gone up and a lot of patients are paying between £3 and £4 to park.
"But it is not just the cost – there are often queues of cars trying to get into the hospital car park.
"Making it easier to get the park-and-ride bus would help them and the environment in the city."
Fellow panel member Eric Charlesworth said: "It seems ironic that the park-and-ride service used to run past the infirmary and it was stopped without consultation.
"A stop at the infirmary would be a reversion to what it was."