Letter from Nantwich
June 2007 (2)
Healthy progress at
the new centre
The Nantwich Health Park as it is due to
look next summer.
Picture used, with permission, from the Henry
Below: the building as it actually
is at this date
a couple of years' delay because of "legal technicalities" (Nantwich
Chronicle, April 2007), Nantwich Health Park is making excellent
progress - as the steel framework (right) shows - on a part of the Civic
Hall car park and what used to be the Crowsfoot Centre site.
The £6.5million health centre
is due for completion next summer, when it will house the doctors
and staff from Kiltearn, Tudor and Beam Street medical centres. The
current Beam Street health centre is a few yards away to the left of my picture. The three current centres will all close once the health
Work began on the building (by
Pochin's of Middlewich) in April. As the current Chairman of Nantwich Town Council (Cllr Bill
McGinnis) told the Nantwich Chronicle at the time: "We were getting so
many new arrivals into the town and all our surgeries were operating
closed lists. People were complaining they couldn't find a doctor."
Central and Eastern Cheshire
Primary Care Trust is the body which has commissioned the 39,000 sq ft
building, designed by Jefferson Sheard Architects for
Henry Davidson Developments
of Nottingham, who procured the site and are developing the scheme.
Unlike the present surgeries
which concentrate on medical care (there is an emergency dental clinic
next to the Beam Street centre), the new park will provide Nantwich
people and those from surrounding villages, with NHS services - many of
which patients now have to travel to Leighton Hospital for. These are dental
care, physiotherapy, podiatry, nursing and midwifery, minor operations,
phlebotomy, and an on-site pharmacy. Not to mention 20 GPs' consulting
rooms and administrative areas. A real one-stop shop.
The minor operations facility
reminds me of the Cottage Hospital which once stood just off Welsh Row
in Welshman's Lane, where the local GPs carried out procedures such as
varicose vein removals. There are new houses now on
RECALL that a
vegetable garden stood on the area now occupied by the car
park and the new development.
It was just across a lane, nicknamed Dicky's
Lane (I'm not sure what it's real name was) from Nantwich C of E
Primary School - affectionately known as Dicky's Lane College, of
course. Older pupils were given a gardening lesson.
Scheduled classes were
cancelled and we were all taken to the gardens and called upon to pick
I forget what it was but I
don't recall getting any of it. I had a feeling that it was a school
garden - although I am not sure why it was.
Maybe produce for the school
meals came from there - and that whatever we picked was getting very
ripe in the sun.
FOOTNOTE (2014): The Health Park
name didn't survive the construction of the building. It is now called
Church View Primary Care Centre.
The following sections have
been updated in the light of what did eventually happen to the area,
but the comments have been left in the appropriate date order to give an
idea of what was known at the time
(Rewritten in 2014)
IT was rumoured, as these things somehow are,
that the ground floor of the new Nantwich "health park" would be the "home"
of the administration staff - the background teams,
not the receptionists, etc.
There wasn't an announcement
to this effect, as far as I knew, but when did that ever stop "the news"
The floors arrangement
that the patients from the Nantwich Health
Centre, the Tudor Surgery and Kiltearn Medical Centre would be on the two upper floors.
True, there were to be
lifts to the upper floors, but lifts are like banks to some elderly
people. No-go areas.
hopefully, be mainly passing through, but the administration staff will
be there full time.
However, in the event the
county council's community health services now occupy the ground floor.
There are consulting rooms, rooms used as clinics as required and the
dental clinic on the ground floor.
At this stage, I still
hadn't heard anything about the future of the present health clinic (to
the far left of the pictures in this section).
I was not the only one to think
that it should be demolished and the land turned over to car parking to
replace that lost to the Health Park.
Would it become yet another
site for private housing, I wondered.
I was surprised about what
actually became situated on the site . . .
CONSTRUCTION work on Church View Primary Care
Centre (to use its final name) was completed on Friday, June 6, 2008. Two weeks followed during which time the "furniture, fixtures and
fittings" were installed.
The medical people moved in between June 26 and July 18,
beginning with the personnel of
the Cheshire East Council Community Services Unit on the ground
floor, followed by Nantwich Health Centre and Tudor
Surgery on the first floor. Bringing
up the rear, on the top floor, was Kiltearn Medical Centre.
The primary care centre also has
a minor operations suite, available to all the surgeries, and the nursing services and health visiting
services are also based there.
A leaflet available at the various surgeries told
patients that the decor is: Cheshire East Community Health
Services, yellow; Nantwich Health Centre, blue; Tudor Surgery, red (is
that a bit like when ships' surgical decks were painted red so that the
blood wasn't so obvious?); and Kiltearn Medical Centre, green.
The name for the centre
was chosen from 100 suggestions from local people, with Church View
being the favourite.
The leaflet says the centre has been
developed by Henry Davidson Developments and Assura Properties
"to be easily accessed by the patients and local people of Nantwich". It was
built by Pochin (although the leaflet doesn't say that).
Two flights of stairs and
take people to their respective health centre.
I counted around 40 new car parking
spaces at the side of the centre, which may make up for those lost under
the new building.
Some of these are on land which was part of the old Crowsfoot Centre, so knocking down the old health centre to
provide new spaces might not be necessary. I had wondered why the Powers
That Be couldn't purchase the building, demolish it, and create
replacement car parking.
THE centre was officially opened by the MP
for Crewe and Nantwich, Mr Edward Timpson, in September 2008.
The view from
the car park with the Dental Service entrance (left) and
the main entrance (above) seen from the unnamed road to the Civic
Hall car park;
For sale - still
THE original health centre building, which
backed on to Beam Street, is still on the market - 20 months after the
primary care centre that replaced it was opened.
Its windows are boarded up and the
plastic letters of its name are disappearing one by one from the wall.
The local GPs' surgeries now
operate (no pun intended)
from the adjacent Church View P.C.C.
Meanwhile, the old property and surrounding car park (totalling nearly
three-quarters of an acre) are described as a
redevelopment site by the Manchester agents who have it on the market,
with a suggested purchase price of £900,000. I see from the new Cheshire
East Council planning department that the agents' suggested uses for the
property are offices, retail, residential or mixed use.
A while ago I would have put my money
becoming residential, but there are premises
and parcels of
land in town which used to be designated residential which are now being
sold as or for offices.
New owner for
THE old health centre has a new owner. A
board on the Beam Street side of the building says the site has been
acquired by Keyworker Homes (North West) Ltd of Blackpool working in
association with Eventus Properties of Wigan.
Proposals for the use of
the building were outlined at two public events in June 2011.
information sheet for the events said that the recent Cheshire Retail
Study has identified "capacity in Nantwich to accommodate an
additional retailer, particularly in the food sector."
food store that moved on to the site