Developers agree on new 2 acre site for health centre

Public consultation for Soham gateway

How it all began. Part of the design and access statement for the Soham Gateway project reflected public consultation. - Credit: This Land

The ‘will it, won’t it move’ fate of Staploe Medical Centre at Soham, looks to have been decided after agreement was reached on its relocation. 

This Land Ltd says a new centre will be built on a two-acre site previously zoned for housing as part of the Soham Eastern Gateway proposals. 

More than 500 homes are included in the gateway project which still awaits a decision from East Cambridgeshire District Council. 

This Land says the housing originally proposed for the site of the new medical centre will be “redistributed across other phases/parcels of development”. 

However, one resident, accusing This Land of “tweaking the plans yet again,” says the town is losing the will to live over the twists and turns of the gateway project. 

He told East Cambs Council, who will decide the application, that he has lost count of the number of times the plans have been amended.  

“It seems that each brainwave by one of the development team is supported by yet more maps and consultation documents,” he says. 

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“No wonder the number of documents associated with it on your website is now well passed 600.  

“Each new twist leaves us here in Soham, residents and town council alike, wondering what will come next.  

“We have lost track of the overall picture with all its controversial proposals, because we are too busy worrying about the detail in the latest idea from This Land.” 

He added: “The latest medical centre tweaks are hardly worth the effort of a new application.  

“Why not just build a new section east of the current building, with two separate car parks; one for the out-of-town patients, and leave the old one for the town patients, as it is at the present time.  

“Obviously this idea is far too straightforward. Better to obfuscate the whole thing with a tweak here, and a tweak there, and so hide whatever else This Land want to bring our way, to their advantage.  

“Please put an end to all this nonsense, and refuse the whole application.” 

Soham Town Council has re-iterated its multiple objects with concerns that is “still no direct access for vehicular traffic into town from the proposed new development”. 

It also expresses fears about access to the medical centre, and concerns over the fate of local commons.