Sax to get new health centre

A SUFFOLK town is set to get a new one-stop health centre – provided flood risk fears are overcome.Suffolk Coastal District Council's development control sub-committee which met yesterday was strongly backed the plans for Saxmundham.

A SUFFOLK town is set to get a new one-stop health centre – provided flood risk fears are overcome.

Suffolk Coastal District Council's development control sub-committee, which met yesterday, has strongly backed the plans for Saxmundham.

The scheme has also been backed by local parish councils, with 450 letters of support from local residents.

Councillors approved a recommendation that they should back proposals to create an integrated health and social care centre on land next to the sports ground on the old A12.

But it will be subject to resolving the objection initially raised by the Environment Agency – which voiced concern about potential flood risk.

The Environment Agency is expected to respond to a flood risk assessment carried out on behalf of the GPs in the next couple of weeks.

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Councillors heard that just a small area of the site was liable to flood when looking at a one-in-a-hundred year event, even allowing for global warming.

If the Agency withdraws its objection, the project can go ahead. If it does not, the proposals will go back to the committee for further consideration.

The centre will include an ambulance station, a creche, a base for Suffolk Doctors On Call and space for social services, physiotherapists, optician, dentist, a dispensary and a surgery.

It is set to replace the town's Lambsale Meadow surgery, which GPs say is outgrowing the site.