It'll be ticketed and towed before you can say vultures
THE phrase 'rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic' sprang to mind when I read in The Post about a £5 million project to give the drab and grey BRI a less "overbearing appearance".
This includes moving its entrance further down Upper Maudlin Street and creating a new 'friendlier' gateway, called a 'welcome centre'.
Now, while I completely agree that our main city hospital is far from welcoming when you're crossing its threshold to visit a sick loved one or attend an appointment, I have to say – priorities, please.
The BRI has other pressing issues that need addressing far more urgently than this.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Wednesday, May 22 2013
Its woeful lack of hospital car parking for patients and visitors is one. And yes, I know that these days we're all supposed to walk or cycle everywhere, but that's easier said than done, especially if you don't live within realistic walking or cycling distance, you aren't well enough to walk or cycle, you've got kids or elderly relatives with you, you're heavily laden, it's raining stair-rods, it's after dark, you're distressed . . . I could go on.
If we had a reliable and affordable public transport system, that would help, but we don't.
Like many of you reading this, I've experienced bang-your-head-on-the-steering-wheel frustration at having seriously ill relatives inside the BRI who I can't get to because I can't park my car, circling endlessly waiting for someone to move, desperately trying to glimpse the slightest flicker of movement signalling that someone is walking back to their car to exit.
You feel like just dumping your car anywhere and running inside, but as it's Bristol you know it'll be gleefully ticketed and towed before you can say 'vultures'.
And I know what it's like to be discharged weak and wobbly from the BRI, only to have to be left alone to retrieve my car from the back of beyond before trying in vain to come close enough to pick me up and help me in. It was also snowing at the time, which just put the tin hat on it.
Taxis are expensive, and more than one of my out-of-town relatives visiting gravely-ill loved ones has been taken on a expensively-circuitous route to the BRI by cab drivers.
I've tried the free bus, but that was a leisurely magical mystery tour – fine if you've got all day, but not if you have anything as inconvenient as a job to get back to or an appointment time or visiting slot you can't miss.
Apparently, before submitting plans for the new entrance University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust "spoke to hospital users and the local community to gain their views on the design and layout of the (welcome) centre".
How many patients and hospital visitors would choose a 'friendlier' new entrance over more car parking spaces?
I know it's a city centre hospital but it can't be insurmountable.
Given the incredible life-saving medical miracles the BRI staff achieve every day, surely in comparison to that this problem is eminently solvable?