Campaigners claim hospital bid ignored

CAMPAIGNERS fighting to save a convalescent home have written a letter of complaint to health bosses claiming their bid to safeguard its future was dismissed out of hand.

CAMPAIGNERS fighting to save a convalescent home have written a letter of complaint to health bosses claiming their bid to safeguard its future was dismissed out of hand.

The Bartlet Bequest Action Group (BBAG) has contacted Suffolk Primary Care Trust (PCT) because they feel their application for continued community use was ignored at the expense of a less suitable residential scheme.

Health bosses agreed to sell the Felixstowe convalescent home earlier this year in an effort to balance its books.

When the Bartlet went up for sale BBAG submitted a bid for its continued use within the health sector but the PCT agreed to sell to the PJ Livesey Group, which is planning to convert it into luxury flats.


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Mike Ninnmey, a member of BBAG and Suffolk Coastal district councillor for Felixstowe West, said: “We're not happy with the way the bid was handled. We feel it was dismissed out of hand without any real consideration.

“We were a newly formed social enterprise scheme but the PCT wanted to see accounts for the last three years - it just wasn't realistic.

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“It seems the odds were stacked against us from the start. More importantly the decision to sell seems to be against the local plan.

“With the level of bed blocking we continue to see you would have thought the number of extra beds provided by the Bartlet would have come in handy.”

Martin Royal, Suffolk PCT's programme director for business development, said they carefully considered all four of the applications they received.

“Bartlet Bequest Action Group's application did not provide the required basic information nor was the offer acceptable to the NHS in terms of best value so we could not consider it further.

“We have a good understanding of the relevant planning policy around use of redundant public buildings and the PCT is fully compliant with these requirements.”

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