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Column 15th September 2021

Good news about the Health Centre Expansion

How often do I get to talk about GOOD news?

We have now had three items of good news in the last couple of years.

Most recently when St Modwen announced that they were actually starting work on the Wantage Eastern Relief Road.

At the Crab Hill Forum last week we were told that the work will be completed in three phases – phase 1 will be the section from the Lockinge turning on the A417.

This is required for the next phase of development so might move quite quickly.

Phase 2 is the bit from the A338 at the roundabout at the end of Mably Way.

The last phase is the bit in the middle. This is funded from Governments grants which were due to expire in March but which, I’m told, have been extended so I hope the money will continue to be available until this work is completed.

Before that we had good news about the cycle route to Harwell from Wantage. Major works were required but this was finally done.

Except that the surface wasn’t really suited for cycling and has to be fixed…

So todays GOOD NEWS is that the business case for the extension to Wantage Health centre has been approved by the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group and the planning application has been submitted.

See application P21/V2416/FUL at www.whitehorsedc.gov.uk for details.

This is the best news for the Mably Way Health Centre since 2012 when the representative from NHS England told us that the planning application was imminent.

I guess 9 years is imminent to the National Health Service.

Anyway, work could begin as early as January 2022.

It will provide the Practices with nine extra consulting and treatment rooms each.

There will also be a larger joint waiting and reception area in the centre of the building, new patient facilities, new pharmacy and optician units at the front of the building, and more parking.

It’s designed to allow construction to happen with minimum disruption to existing services.

It’s the first time I’ve ever seen a planning application with every comment supporting the application.

Obviously there is a long way to go with approval required by the District Council, contractors to be appointed and internal details to be finalised, but it should be completed by the end of 2023 (supplies of building materials allowing).

All we’ll need then are sufficient staff to occupy the rooms.


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