GP's fight for one-stop health shop

DOCTORS have warned a chance to build a "leading edge" one-stop health shop to house Saxmundham's surgery could be lost.Doctors at Lambsale Meadow health centre have launched a poster campaign and urged residents to write to Suffolk Coastal District Council before a crunch decision is taken on their plan for a new purpose-built centre on a site further north along the old A12.

DOCTORS have warned a chance to build a "leading edge" one-stop health shop to house Saxmundham's surgery could be lost.

Doctors at Lambsale Meadow health centre have launched a poster campaign and urged residents to write to Suffolk Coastal District Council before a crunch decision is taken on their plan for a new purpose-built centre on a site further north along the old A12.

They have had talks about the proposal with planning officers, who have expressed concern over the flood risk, the site's position outside the development line of Saxmundham and its impact on "historic parkland".

But the GPs said the new style one-stop shop – which would contain a variety of facilities including a crèche, an ambulance station, a social services centre, a dentist, a dispensary, an optician and a physiotherapist – was in line with Government thinking.

The doctors added they were outgrowing their present site as the town expanded and were trying to plan for the long term.

Health group partner, Dr John Havard, said he had looked at a number of other sites around the town, but felt this was their best option.

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A report on the plan is likely to go to Suffolk Coastal District Council's development control sub-committee on December 18.

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