Month: March 2017
As readers know, I’m standing as the Independent East Devon Alliance candidate for Devon County Council in the Seaton & Colyton division. I’m launching my campaign with a Public Election Meeting, ‘A DIFFERENT KIND OF COUNTY COUNCILLOR’, on Wednesday 5th April at 7 pm in the Marshlands Centre, Harbour Road, Seaton (behind the murals opposite the Underfleet roundabout).
In an extraordinarily generous gesture, Otter Nurseries have told Save Hospital Services – Honiton that they will give £10,000 towards the costs of a Judicial Review of the NEW Devon Clinical Commissioning Group’s decision to close the in-patient beds in Honiton Hospital. What an example for local campaigners in Seaton! If a lot of local businesses and individuals give a fraction of this amount, we can raise the funds to overturn the Seaton closures, too.
This statement has been issued by the Save Our Hospital Services-Honiton group:
SOHS – Honiton Steering Group that we will be applying for a judicial review of the CCG decision regarding the beds in Honiton Hospital because it was based on a flawed consultation process. There may also be human rights issues. The steering group have created a crowdfunding page on Just Giving in order to raise £75,000 for the first tranche of funding as lawyers and barristers are very expensive. The steering group believe it’s really important to go for a judicial review as we may well be able to demonstrate that the decision was unlawful. If we can get people to give £10 each we can very soon raise the first round of funding. When you think about it £10 is four coffees or two glasses of wine so we are not asking people to make a massive sacrifice to support the judicial review.” For those who wish to donate the URL is www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/honitonhospitalbeds
The reason why we put “we are going for a judicial review” is because it is not just the steering group ..it is the town, the mayor, the league of friends, senior voice. They have all been consulted and are in favour of a judicial review.
In a shock development, East Devon Conservatives have issued a statement which has appeared on Councillor Ian Hall’s Facebook page. They have already given up the fight against the removal of beds from Seaton, Honiton and Okehampton which the CCG has decided.
Time is of the essence. This report comes from Honiton and is on the “Save Our Hospital Services” Facebook page (reproduced via eastdevonwatch.org):
“Last night the steering group for Honiton met for our weekly catch up in the Star in Honiton and invited the nurses from the hospital to join us after for a drink and chat to find out how they were and what news that they had.
“After a few tears, they proceeded to tell us that last week, someone from the CCG along with other people turned up and started to measure the areas in the ward that they want to have boarded up when the ward closes. They did this in full view of the nurses and staff as well as the patients (the ward is full at present with mostly medical cases, not bed blockers).
“They also told us that so far not one nurse has been spoken to regarding retraining, change of job, what happens when they close the ward etc.
“There has been no mention of the maternity unit that depends on the ward nurses during the night.
“THIS IS DISGRACEFUL BEHAVIOUR.
“We feel that after 1st April it will do no good to have street parties, red lines or whatever. We have to continually and totally bombard our MP’s, Councillors (sorry for those already on this list) the well being and scrutiny committee and anyone else that will listen who might have some say.”
On Monday night, Seaton Town Council unanimously agreed resolutions to oppose the CCG’s decision, welcome the Devon Health Scrutiny resolution to refer it to the Secretary of State, and work with other town and parish councils and explore Judicial Review with a view to blocking it.
Councillors Hartnell, Rowland and myself were nominated to take these decisions forward and meet Neil Parish MP to explore how he can help our case.
The Council also agreed to support the ‘red line’ protest at Seaton Hospital on Saturday 1st April at 10 a.m.
The meeting agreed to pressurise all local town and parish councils and EDDC for effective action against the CCG’s decision – including Judicial Review – and to continue the campaign whatever councils decide.
The meeting also supported Jack Rowland’s call for a demonstration at Seaton Hospital on SATURDAY 1ST APRIL at 10 am, when we will make a ‘red line’ around the hospital to protect its beds: see POSTER