Local MP Alan Mak has launched a campaign calling on the Emsworth Surgery’s doctors to keep an ongoing presence in the town centre following a potential move of their main surgery to a new building at Redlands Grange.
Talks between the doctors and NHS England to build a modern health centre for Emsworth at Redlands Grange are at an advanced stage, with an announcement expected in the coming months.
In anticipation of the planned Redlands Grange move, Alan has brought together other community representatives in calling for a community presence to be maintained in the town centre – with a satellite surgery the preferred option. The doctors currently operate a satellite surgery in Westbourne, close to the location of the new clinic.
Speaking after the launch, Alan encouraged all residents to back his campaign by signing-up as supporters on his website to demonstrate the community’s support for a surgery presence in the town centre.
Alan said: “Over the last three years I’ve chaired a number of meetings between the doctors, the NHS and other stakeholders to turn our vision of a modern health centre for Emsworth into a reality and to identify the best possible option that meets the long-term needs of the community.
“Some people hoped that the old Victoria Cottage Hospital site could be used. However, the doctors have the final say, and their view is that a new, modern purpose-built facility at Redlands Grange secures the long term clinical needs of local residents.
“Nevertheless, I believe it’s important that some presence is maintained in the town centre, especially for those residents who would find it harder to access the new facilities at Redlands Grange. That’s why I have launched my campaign to persuade the doctors that Emsworth Surgery needs to keep a presence in the town centre.”
The campaign has been backed by the business community, with Sue Treagust from the Emsworth Business Association saying that it was important for the town that the doctors have a retained presence.
She said: “Although I am disappointed by the decision to move to Redlands Grange, I believe now that it’s vital the community comes together to ensure that some health provision remains in the town centre. I’m support the aims of Alan’s campaign and I encourage all residents to get behind it.”
The campaign is also supported by all three of the Emsworth councillors, who backed the push to retain services in the town centre.
Cllr Richard Kennett said: “From speaking with residents I believe most people wish to finally see a modern health centre for Emsworth even if that means moving to Redlands Grange. However, I fully back Alan’s idea of a satellite surgery which is a sensible compromise and hopefully something that everyone can get behind.”
If you wish to sign-up to the campaign please visit alanmak.org.uk/surgery
Picture 1: Alan Mak MP with Emsworth councillors Rivka Cresswell and Richard Kennett
Picture 2: Alan Mak MP with Sue Treagust from the Emsworth Business Association