Posted by: swinemoor | April 4, 2010

Chronology – November 2009

30th November 2009

Meeting of the Local Community Liaison Group at Westwood Hospital.

A representative of the residents of Sigston Road attended this meeting and was given permission by The Chair to speak. However, she was advised not to discuss the site, as this had now be chosen – and approved! There was no councillor present at this meeting until after the representative from Sigston Road had spoken (one Councillor arrived later)  so only the PCT  audience was informed that the residents of  Sigston Road, (an already busy road which runs parallel to Swinemoor Lane) will suffer from these hospital plans, yet they appear to have been ignored (see more info under Traffic).  Following this a map was produced and someone asked where Sigston Road was! It was not even shown on the map, despite the potential parking problems for the residents!

The Sigston Road residents’ representative then asked two further questions; Do the PCT intend to charge for hospital parking and if so, how much? Answer: The PCT had not decided. The residents are  concerned that hospital visitors will park along Sigston Road to avoid paying parking charges within the hospital.

Will there be a chemist within the hospital? Answer: Not in stage 1. Residents want to keep the chemist on Samman Road.

Finally, the group was advised that the residents of Swinemoor and Sigston had signed a 400 plus signature petition against the building of a hospital on the Swinemoor Lane site. It had been handed-into the Council offices by two residents, late in 2008. This raised further questions, specifically:

  • What had happened to this petition, as there is no mention of it in the Council Planning committee minutes?
  • Why had outline planning still been granted?

The Sigston Road residents’ representative was then told to contact  someone in the  ERYC Planning Department, as no one at this Local Community Liaison Group meeting could answer these questions!


Responses

  1. […] deficiencies were raised again on 30th November 2009 at the Liaison Group meeting at the Beverley Westwood Hospital yet, to date, nothing has been done about them. Indeed, these […]

  2. Once the campaigners had achieved the funding for a new hospital in Beverley at the end of 2007 – a big campaign and hard work for many – the question was where to put the new hospital?
    Possible sites were already being talked of. There was the Grovehill site, where a projected retail development did not materialize in 2008. There was a site near the new ambulance station in Molescroft. In the end there was a list of 28 possible sites produced – a list to which we shall return.
    Late in 2008, an option was taken by the Primary Care Trust (PCT) to buy three fields that are bordered on two sides by Swine Moor common land and on the third side by another grassed field. These three fields belonged to the Beverley Consolidated Charity and have been part of Beverley’s charitable endowment since 1707. The wish of the Charity to sell this land has been known for some years, but the land offered little to a purchaser other than a place for grazing animals. So the Charity continued to own the land.
    That PCT option to purchase was taken because the PCT had been advised by ERYC officials that planning permission was most unlikely to be given for the PCT’s preferred site – near the new ambulance station in Molescroft – and they were asked to look at the Swine Moor sites. This crude shove to the PCT in the direction of the Charity’s fields was what persuaded the PCT to buy the site.
    The PCT then began to seek a contractor to build its new hospital. The potential building contractors drew up their plans envisaging the new hospital on the Swine Moor site. The resulting chosen contractor was Interserve.
    Meantime the unsuitability of the site on Swine Moor was emerging. There were three main objections. One was the potential traffic problems on Swinemoor Lane. These problems derived partly from the new hospital traffic with its associated pedestrian crossing and traffic lights, but more importantly, when the projected southern relief road is built, from traffic bypassing Beverley and entering Swinemoor Lane at the roundabouts to its north and south. The second problem was the risk of flood on the site. After the June 2007 rains the chosen fields flooded to the west (Swinemoor Lane side) and to the south to a considerable degree. The fields are often very wet even in normal times. Climate change will aggravate this problem. Thirdly, Swine Moor is one of Beverley’s commons – in the same “highest value landscape” category as Westwood and Figham. The Charity’s three fields planned for the new hospital site are geographically part of Swine Moor and have been green land for hundreds of years. Swine Moor is particularly rich in bird life, changing with the seasons.
    What about the other 27 sites that were listed and said to have been considered as possibilities for the new hospital? Many were clearly impossible and should not have been listed. Some were too small in area and others had no sensible access. The list purported to conclude that that the Swine Moor fields were the best site. As the Civic Society’s submission to the planning process said, “If the errors (on the list) are corrected, it becomes obvious that the hospital should be built elsewhere”. Had the list of sites been considered properly then the most likely logical outcome would have been the choice (on merit) of a site near the ambulance station.
    The three fields on Swine Moor are not the best site. The ERYC broke all of its own pre-set development plan policies to authorise that planning permission. So a non-planning reason evidently governed the ERYC planners (and governed councillors, who voted by majority to confirm that reason as acceptable) to choose a site for our new Beverley hospital that has little to do with its merits as a site for a hospital building.

    Article taken from a Beverley Civic Society Newsletter -23/11/09

  3. The Civic Society was involved in the campaign to preserve hospital beds in Beverley from the first threats in 2004. The Primary Care Trust (PCT)’s consultation on the closure of Beverley, Driffield, Hornsea and Withernsea hospitals aroused almost universal opposition, so that by 2007 the PCT changed its plan and bid successfully for a new hospital in Beverley.
    From 2004 onwards the opponents of closure complained about the lack of proper consultation; for example, Beverley Town Council wrote to the PCT that its councillors objected “not only to your proposals but the manner in which this consultation has been carried out”. After 2007 the PCT promised to consult more widely – but did not. The first news that the unlikely Swine Moor fields had been chosen as the new hospital site, was the application to uproot the hedges (December 2008). The PCT then displayed some artists’ impressions of the new hospital for a total of 13 hours in three Beverley sites before they received outline planning permission in September 2009. A further set of drawings were exhibited in October for 12 hours as “detailed designs”. Driffield and West Wolds residents were never consulted, Hornsea had one meeting. Subsequently the plans were changed again and again (and at the time of writing are still in flux) so that those shown to the public were now irrelevant: we were told in November 2009 that the plans “were changing by the hour”.
    The Civic Society has consistently supported the need for a hospital in Beverley. Members should be aware, however, that the hospital now proposed has no resident doctors, no Accident and Emergency, no pharmacy. Thirty beds are to replace all the beds of Westwood, Hornsea, Driffield and ultimately Withernsea hospitals. Hundred of thousands of people in the East Riding will still be travelling to Hull and Castle Hill.

    BE. 24/11/09


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