MP's key players meeting will pave way for talks on Emsworth hospital's future

DECISION makers will unite this week in a bid to devise a '˜road map' for the future of an unused hospital site.Â

Sunday, 2nd September 2018, 11:51 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th September 2018, 5:15 am
The former Victoria Cottage Hospital in Emsworth. Picture: Alan Mak

The landmark was put on the market by NHS Property Services (NHSPS) in July after it was declared '˜surplus to need' by the South Eastern Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). 

However, marketing materials from agents Hellier Langston were brought down after fierce opposition from town campaigners and Havant MP Alan Mak '“ who were not notified of the NHS' intention to release the property, which was built in the 1800s  using community cash.

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Emsworth doctors  are now reconsidering it as a location for their new surgery and p lans will be discussed at Mr Mak's closed, round table meeting on the subject on Thursday.  

'˜As soon as I found out without warning that the Emsworth Victoria Cottage Hospital was being put on the market for sale, I moved quickly to organise a round table meeting for all of the key stakeholders,' Mr Mak said. 

'˜The meeting is an opportunity for all interested groups to engage in dialogue and agree a road map for the future of the site.' 

He added: '˜I'll continue working hard to ensure the EVCH site has a future as a medical facility for the community.' 

The meeting will be attended by '˜key decision makers' from the CCG, NHSPS and the Emsworth medical practice '“ as well as the town's councillors and key community groups. 

Dwynwen Stepien has played a vital role in the Emsworth United campaign, which was launched to protest the sale of the hospital site. 

Also the chairwoman of the newly-established Emsworth Community Land Trust, she is set to attend the meeting in three days' time.  

'˜The for sale signs might have come down, but the campaign goes on,' she said. 

'˜We are looking positively at this week's meeting and are thinking about what next steps will take us forward.' 

The  NHS' U-turn on the hospital site was announced at the first Emsworth United meeting on August 22, which was attended by more than 400 people.