Residents can have a say on new hospital and surgery

Tom Tugenhadt

Residents in Edenbridge are one step closer to getting their new, combined hospital and GP surgery after the NHS agreed on its preferred location.

After a thorough assessment process, land next to the Eden Centre on Four Elms Road has been agreed by the three partners involved – NHS West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust (KCHFT) Trust and Edenbridge Medical Practice – as the best site for the new centre.

Now the NHS wants to seek local people’s views, and share some early ideas about what the new centre might look like, ahead of seeking planning permission, and seeking to purchase the land.

Residents are invited to attend a meeting that will be chaired by Edenbridge’s MP Tom Tugendhat, on Friday, November 30 from 6.30-8.30pm, at Edenbridge WI Hall, Station Road, Edenbridge.
To book a place, please: email or call 03000 424 348.

This comes after the Programme Board, which is overseeing the development, reviewed potential sites outlined in the draft Sevenoaks Local Plan, taking into account things such as their size, availability, access to public transport, proximity to town centre, environmental impact, and how well they would fit with local council plans.

All the sites considered were on green belt land and the Programme Board also considered whether any of the sites were more likely to be supported by Sevenoaks District Council. A plot next to the Eden Centre, which is owned by Kent County Council (KCC), was identified as the one which best met these criteria.

Ian Ayres, Managing Director of the four clinical commissioning groups in Medway, north and west Kent, said: “ This announcement is an important step forward in securing a new combined hospital and GP surgery for Edenbridge, which people overwhelmingly supported in our public consultation last year.

“We’ve made really good progress so far, now we need to make sure that we develop a facility that enables health and care staff in Edenbridge to deliver the best possible care for local people’s needs. With this in mind, we have appointed a design team and are inviting residents of Edenbridge to come and see what this new ‘health and well-being centre’ could potentially look like, and let us know their views.”

Dr Simon Morrison, from Edenbridge Medical Practice, said: “There is clear evidence that having a new combined hospital and GP surgery will enable us to recruit the best GPs, nurses and other staff, and to work with the hospital teams and others, to deliver improved, holistic healthcare for the people of Edenbridge and the surrounding villages. We are excited that this project has taken a real step forward, and look forward to hearing what people have to stay about the early designs.”
Photo MP Tom Tugenhadt

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