This paper describes a method of improving the cooling of the hub region of high-pressure turbine (HPT) rotor by making better use of the unsteady coolant flows originating from the upstream vane. The study was performed computationally on an engine HPT stage with representative inlet hot streak and vane coolant conditions. An experimental validation study of hot streak migration was undertaken on two low-speed test facilities. The unsteady mechanisms that transport hot and cold fluid within the rotor hub region are first examined. It was found that vortex-blade interaction dominated the unsteady transport of hot and cold fluid in the rotor hub region. This resulted in the transport of hot fluid onto the rotor hub and pressure surface, causing a peak in the surface gas temperatures. The vane film coolant was found to have only a limited effect in cooling this region. A new cooling configuration was thus examined which exploits the unsteadiness in rotor hub to aid transport of coolant towards regions of high rotor surface temperatures. The new coolant was introduced from a slot upstream of the vane. This resulted in the feed of slot coolant at a different phase and location relative to the vane film coolant within the rotor. The slot coolant was entrained into the unsteady rotor secondary flows and transported towards the rotor hub-pressure surface region. The slot coolant reduced the peak time-averaged rotor temperatures by a similar amount as the vane film coolant despite having only a sixth of the coolant mass flow.