THOUSANDS of pounds will have to be spent altering destination information on buses following the decision to rename Scotland's newest hospital after the queen.

Scotland's largest independent bus company, McGill's, had surveyed customers about how to refer to the new hospital and went on to design and purchase branding for at least 40 buses when the £842 million building was known as the South Glasgow University Hospital.

Now the facility has been renamed the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital the bus company faces making alterations to all the material.

Ralph Roberts, managing director of McGill's, estimates the cost will be in the range of £13,000 to £15,000.

"I am neutral on the whole fact the Queen opened it. I have no view," Mr Roberts said.

"However, I am frustrated by this because whilst it is not a sum of money that is going to hurt us badly, we will not do other things because of this, (such as) cutting back on sponsorship in the local community, because most things are business critical."

He said that if the health board, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, had warned the company the name could change, then the company would have acted differently.

Instead McGill's, who say they run more buses through the hospital campus than anyone else, surveyed around 2,500 passengers about how best to refer to the new hospital on the side of buses and timetables.

The initials SGH were picked as a result and can already been seen on the new McGill's service from the city centre. Tens of thousands of bus timetables have also been printed using these initials.

"It would be environmental madness to junk the ones we have got," said Mr Roberts.

It has emerged that health board minutes for August last year show board members agreed to the name South Glasgow University Hospital - despite some discussion about the use of the word "South".

However, information released by NHS GGC amid ongoing controversy earlier this week described the initial name as an "operational" requirement for when the hospital doors opened to patients in May and suggested there was always potential for change.

The board said: "At the time of placing the order for signage, the specification was reduced so that if names were changed then costs would be minimised."

Mr Roberts said: "Why couldn't they tell people that? We would have done the same. We would not have committed that cost."

In a statement NHS GGC said: "In August 2014 we announced that we would be naming the new adult hospital the South Glasgow University Hospital.

"Following confirmation from the Palace that the queen would be able to perform an official opening ceremony, discussions began in March 2015 regarding the possible renaming of the hospital with a royal title.

"There is a clear protocol for requesting both a royal visit and a royal title and these were followed fully. A number of stages are gone through over a period of time and as a result we were not able to announce the new name any earlier than we did.

"As a result ‘South Glasgow’ was replaced with ‘Queen Elizabeth’ in the hospital’s name."

Stagecoach West Scotland, which also operate buses to the hospital, said they had already been planning to change the displays on the side of their vehicles so the name change did not have cost implications.

A spokesman for First Glasgow said: "First Glasgow operates 24 fast and frequent services an hour to the new Queen Elizabeth University Hospital from around the city, including our dedicated Service 77 'Hospital Connect' branded buses which launched in May.

"Digital destination screens are being altered to match printed materials as part of our ongoing maintenance and and where the previous name still features on the sides of some of our vehicles, these will also be replaced soon as part of our rolling programme of vinyl upgrades."