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Tuesday, 10 March 2009

An Open Letter from Darnall Health Centre

This is an open letter to the people of Darnall and surrounding areas.

The issue of the redevelopment of the Centre of Darnall is currently in the spotlight and as a result of interest from the Ward Brothers / Sheffield City Council, working in tandem, plans have been drawn up to essentially re-establish the Centre as a modern easily accessible environment. (See the plans available on the Sheffield City Council website).

Along with the new Centre for Darnall the Primary Care Trust has proposed to build a new Health Centre for the GPs of the area—this plan was first put forward in 2001 and the PCT have told us throughout that the build would start ‘soon’.The proposed build would be funded via the LIFT Scheme. Since this has the backing of Central Government, all could have gone as planned. However, the administration of the scheme has not gone forward and as a result the news from the organisations involved – that they are now ready, once more, to proceed – is difficult to accept, as its credibility is tainted by the history of this affair.

Set against this background is the fact that the current Health Centre on York Road has been targeted by repeated acts of vandalism and thefts, which have caused thousands of pounds of damage. As a result the police have given a special dispensation to have razor wire fitted around the roof and, with the fence which completes the scene, the Centre is now reminiscent of a prison area.

Plans for a 100 hour pharmacy were put forward to Sheffield City Council for the York Road site and these plans were rejected, due to the fact that the site was deemed ‘unsuitable’.

The case is therefore being made for a move from these unsuitable / unacceptable premises to a more central location in Darnall and to this end the former Wellington site has been retained with a view to a move, (pending suitable planning permission), in the latter part of the year (Plans are available on the Sheffield City Council website.)


wee beefy said...

I found the open letter post when I googled information on the status of the Wellington Pub, having had a 'sold' sign up for weeks now. Does this mean that the phrase " the wellington site has been retained " refers to the purchase of this business premises by Sheffield City Council or individuals working in their interests ?
It seems very strange that with pubs deservedly recognised as valuable urban community facilities, and MP's bemoaning the widespread removal of licensed premises in the area, it should be considered appropriate to take yet another public house out of use, especially in Darnall, where drinkers are bereft of choice following a decade of sometimes avoidable closures. The council should be using its planning powers to ensure that change of use applications for pubs are rejected wherever there is a prospect of viability - and anyone with a gram of business sense can see that returning the Wellington to its former UK community pub of the year status could be achieved if only a fresh approach ( starting with quality products ) was tried by the pub company. So instead of further destroying our heritage, lets put pressure on whichever faceless conglomerate is giving up on Darnall and concentrate on finding a site that has fallen completely, instead of temporarily, out of its intended use.

Darnall Forum said...

Just to clarify, it is the Doctor's Practice which has purchased the Wellington. The City Council and the Primary Care Trust have both opposed this move.