Branded Harry Potter buses that usually convey fans to Warner Bros.’ The Making of Harry Potter studio tour in the U.K. are being used to transport key National Health Service (NHS) workers for free between hospitals fighting coronavirus.
The buses have been provided by Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden and bus operator Golden Tours to transport key workers between West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust’s three sites.
Paul da Gama, chief people officer at West Herts Hospitals, said: “Our workforce has been depleted due to sickness or self-isolation and so it’s really important that those staff who are well but have transport issues can come back.”
He added: “A special shuttle bus, which will have strict social distancing rules, is the perfect solution and we are so grateful to Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden and Golden Tours for making this happen. Our staff might not be travelling to exotic locations or seeing behind the scenes of a major movie, but they will be making magic happen in their own way.”
The free service runs hourly between the Trust’s three sites, with its first journey embarking just after 6 a.m. and its last drop-off at 10:40 p.m.
A spokesperson for Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden said: “We couldn’t think of a better way to use the buses at this time. We are delighted to play a part in supporting our local NHS in its time of need.”
Warner Bros. suspended its Harry Potter Studios tour mid-March, during the first wave of entertainment shutdowns across the U.K. in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
In the month since, “Harry Potter” author J. K. Rowling, who admitted recently to having suffered coronavirus symptoms, launched a “Harry Potter at Home” digital hub, with craft videos, quizzes, puzzles and articles for fans.
In the U.K., recent figures show coronavirus has so far claimed 12,107 lives, and infected 93,873.