The Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest hospital trusts in the country. There are around 25 wards, 10 theatres and an A&E department.
The bulk of formal teaching will be given at “Redwood Education Centre”, which has numerous teaching rooms, a clinical skills lab and library. You may also spend some of your time in Cheltenham (but this won’t be a lot in 3rd year), which is a little smaller, but has a very similar atmosphere and set-up.
The hospital is a 15-minute walk away from accommodation. At first it seems like a complete maze so leave yourself plenty of time to get around. The staff are friendly and eager to teach too – so make the most of it!
There is a student room at the top of the tower block – you will find a TV, lockers and sofas. You can also use the doctors’ kitchen – here you will find a supply of tea and coffee along with a microwave. There is also a computer room here.
If that doesn’t take your fancy, there is the Fosters cafe for students, staff and patients – food is pretty cheap (NHS badge for discounts!). There is also the WRVS in the outpatients department for some corporate Costa goodness.
Most people travel to Gloucester by car, sharing lifts – can take around 40 minutes and sometimes up to an hour in heavy traffic. There is a really good train service that runs from Bristol (1-3 trains leaving each hour). The train station is a 20-minute walk from the halls but taxis are available.
On the odd occasion you may have to travel to Cheltenham for clinics – there is a free bus that runs every half an hour – remember your hospital ID. The coordinator at Gloucester will issue you with a temporary bus pass – it can take 20-minutes (outside of rush hour) but up to an hour in rush hour.
The accommodation is some of the best! Rooms are modern, clean and well decked out: large desk, bookshelf and small wardrobe etc. Internet is available and a connecting cable is provided. Some of the bathrooms are shared but some rooms, if you’re lucky enough, have en-suites.
Standard bedding is sometimes provided but do check before going! (You might want to bring your own anyway, especially in winter, as the duvets can be pretty thin.) There are communal kitchens, which is the only shared area. Kitchens can be sparse so take a few cutlery/plates/pots/pans just in case.
Get used to taking your door off its lock when you are in the halls, or keep your keys with your at all times. If you get locked out at night, it’s a mile walk to get the master key from security and you have to return it straight away – not nice!
ROEBUCK AND DISCOVERY HOUSE
Housing both 3rd and 5th year students, this property is situated on Brunswick Road. It is divided into a mix of flats: consisting of sharing with 2 others and sometimes up to 4. Some flats have shared bathrooms and others en-suites, as well as kitchens and lounge areas. The internet is via ethernet cable (which is provided). Situated in the newly developed Gloucester docks, it takes about 20 minutes to walk to the hospital.
This accommodation has two disabled rooms, which are comparatively enormous – for some unknown reason they don’t have bins or a mirror and the showers are pretty poor.
FACILITIES IN GLOUCESTER
There is a large 24hr ASDA between the hospital and accommodation with a slight detour. There is also a Tesco Express by the bus station.
If you ask anyone at the hospital where the best place to go out in Gloucester is, they will always say Cheltenham! However, it isn’t cheap. There are a good few pubs around the accommodation worth exploring. There are also a few clubs nearby on Eastgate Street. Nandos and Pizza Express (followed by cinema every Wednesday), were also very popular whilst in Gloucester.
There is a very good Gym (GL1) close to the accommodation – it’s a modern looking sports complex, which has pretty much everything: swimming pool, tennis courts, aerobics classes, weights – it’s great! You also get NHS discount – ask the admin team. There is also a rock-climbing centre near the docks.
It’s a 15 minute walk from halls and you can check out their website here.
“Gloucester is a great place to be in third year! It is known for being one of the more intense academies to study at, particularly for Med-Surg, but in hindsight this isn’t a bad thing! The teaching staff are brilliant, and everyone on the wards is always welcoming and helpful. Gloucester may not be the nicest city in the world (truth be told it’s a bit of a dump), but you’ll end up making some great friends and having a great time as a result!”
“I was in Gloucester for MDEMO…Orthopaedics was great!! The orthopods were all super friendly and encouraging…scrubbed in and assisting at the first surgery I attended!! Loved it!!”