Fight for surgery goes on

PUBLISHED: 10:41 23 March 2006 | UPDATED: 09:50 06 May 2010

The battle is not over yet! Those are the words of campaigners trying to get a doctor s surgery for their housing estate. Developers last week got permission for land at the neighbourhood centre in Great Ashby, previously set aside for a surgery, to be

The battle is not over yet!"

Those are the words of campaigners trying to get a doctor's surgery for their housing estate.

Developers last week got permission for land at the neighbourhood centre in Great Ashby, previously set aside for a surgery, to be used for flats, a shop and a vets.

Great Ashby residents, who currently use nearby surgeries in Chells and St Nicholas, will eventually use one of the new super surgeries being planned by the North Herts and Stevenage Primary Care Trust.

But Mark Barker, chairman of the Great Ashby Community Group, pledged the group would continue to work for medical facilities in the area.

He said: "On behalf of Great Ashby residents, GACG will continue to lobby the PCT and strategic health authority to ensure that the promise of a super surgery that will serve the Great Ashby community, whilst not necessarily located at Great Ashby, will materialise within the four to five-year time scale indicated."

Mr Barker said of the decision to build flats, a vets and a shop there: "Whilst a veterinary surgery would be welcome to those residents who have pets, a GP surgery would have been more beneficial to the majority of the community."

The land at the neighbourhood centre has stood empty for over a decade, since work on the estate began. As part of their planning permission, developers were required to provide space for a surgery.

But the PCT, which co-ordinates doctors' services, said there was "little interest" from GPs in setting up a surgery there.

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