Town rallies in fight for new hospital
- Credit: Trades Council
Shoppers queued up in Wisbech Market Place on Saturday to support the campaign for a new hospital to replace the ailing Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn.
More than 200 props are holding up the roof and the state of the building has been assessed to pose a direct risk to life and to patients, staff and visitors.
At a stall organised by Wisbech, March and District Trades Council (WWMDTC) nearly 250 postcards were signed to health minister Sajid Javid.
They called on the government, quite simply, to “give us a new hospital now'.
Many too away campaign leaflets and extra cards for friends, neighbours and family to sign.
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WMDTC secretary Nick Williams said:: “The QEH was built to last 30 years, it's now 10 years past its sell-by date and it's falling down.
“Critically ill patients have had to be moved to other hospitals because of the state of the building.
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“The campaign is calling for money to be allocated for a rebuild as well as for necessary maintenance to ensure continuity of services and the safety of all.
Mr Williams said: “There's a great strength of feeling about this and a lot of anxiety that the future of the QEH is clouded by the plight of its failing building.
“People we spoke to had personal stories to tell about how important the hospital has been to them.
“They know it's a precious asset we can't afford to lose and they were queuing up to back the campaign.”
The QEH management is lobbying to be one of eight new hospital rebuilds on a list which will be announced later this year.
Mr Williams said the community campaign is continuing and the trades council stall will return to the Market Place on future dates.
He said leaflets and postcards to send to the health minister are available at town and village post offices and at the Rosmini Centre, Queen Mary Centre and Oasis Centre.
A petition organised by our sister paper, the EDP, supporting a new hospital has now been signed by nearly 8000 people.
NE Cambs MP Steve Barclay has said: “My son was born at the QEH so I know from personal experience how important it is to many families in the constituency and beyond.
“The hospital is 40 years old and there comes a time when repeated short term fixes become more costly and less patient friendly than starting afresh.”