Posted by: westlancashirerecord | May 29, 2016

Aughton Surgery Update

On hearing of the withdrawal of the intention by Aughton Surgery aughtsurgpic to re-locate to Aughton Park I sought an assurance from WLBC that the development with its condition that “The pharmacy and medical centre building shall be used only for these uses and for no other purpose (including any other purpose in Class A1 / D1 of the Schedule to the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987, or in any provision equivalent to that Class in any statutory instrument revoking and re-enacting that Order)” could not take place.

The reply, while not exactly as Aughtonians opposed to the Aughton Park development would want, is encouraging, inasmuch as it will be extremely difficult for a competing practice to be established there.

The reply “I refer to your e-mail to John Harrison dated 24th May 2016 regarding application 2015/0274/FUL for the erection of an A1 retail unit and D1 medical centre with associated pharmacy, car parking, service area and public open space. The application was approved by the Council’s Planning Committee on 6th August 2015. The conditions require that the proposed retail unit shall not be occupied until the medical centre has been built in accordance with the approved plan and also restrict the use of the pharmacy and medical centre building to the stated purposes only. However these conditions do not require that the premises are occupied by Aughton surgery as there may be other practitioners and pharmacy services who may wish to use the building. The planning permission would be not be preventative to the scheme being marketed to alternative providers”.

In June 2015 we reported that the agent for the developers had said “We are providing some open space. The GP Surgery is on board with this application and is committed to moving in. We know this is a residential area but the statutory consultees have no issues with it. We believe it would provide a community hub and would be an asset”. [Who asked for a community hub? How many statutory consultees live here? The only asset will be for the developer. What happened to localism?]

And even worse “Halsall resident and Cllr Stephenson thinks the new surgery is needed, and the Co-op store, but she’s not happy with the style of the roof or parking provision. Aughton residents are unhappy about what research if any Cllr Stephenson has done to make such a claim, and wonder how often she will attend the surgery and shop at the Co-op. This seems like a stitch-up. She moves for a deferment and is seconded”.

We also reported that “Halsall resident and Aughton & Downholland Cllr D Westley is delighted the application is coming forward, although it is not in his ward. He has issues with the design and thinks a deferment on these grounds would be advisable. Apparently he thinks a pitched roof needs to be considered and the material and finish should be more appropriate to the area. Once again Aughton residents wonder how often he will use the surgery and how often he will shop at the Co-op”. wesstephpic

By a happy coincidence just a few weeks ago Stephenson was ejected from her council seat and so will no longer be obeying the party whip, a result that gave untold joy to many residents of the area.

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