Plans for new GP surgery in Newton Poppleford thrown into question

Plans for King Alfred Way

Plans for King Alfred Way - Credit: Archant

The future of a new doctor’s surgery in Newton Poppleford has been thrown into question.

Permission for the GP surgery near a development for 40 new homes in the village, 16 of which were designated for affordable housing, was granted by a planning inspectorate in March 2017.

However a statement release last week revealed that the Ottery St Mary-based Coleridge Medical Centre has now withdrawn its interest in renting the proposed medical centre.

Developers, Clinton Devon Estates spoke to the Herald and said they would be contacting other GPs to gauge the level of interest in having a surgery on the site.

The first homes which are a part of the scheme, at King Alfred Way, are due to be completed in winter 2018 and the whole development is hoped to be finished by winter 2019.

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A spokesman for the Coleridge Medical Centre said it was with ‘some regret’ that they had made the decision to withdraw.

He added they were working with commissioners at NHS England and NEW Devon CCG to consider how best to meet the needs of Newton Poppleford residents and the wider practice population.

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The spokesman said: “At this time we intend to continue to run the existing branch surgery within the village, while reviewing options for developing and integrating services in the longer term as the population grows and general practice continues to evolve.”

He added since 2012/2013, when this project first started, GPs had evolved considerably across the country, with much more emphasis on innovative ways of working and broadening the range of co-located staff to provide specialist support and in shared premises.

The spokesman said: “Any changes to the existing premises landscape are referenced to move us towards, rather than away from, that deemed nationally as best practice for our populations.”

Leigh Rix, head of property and land for Clinton Devon Estates, said: “As an organisation that has a very long association with this area we strive for sustainable development to help communities prosper for years to come.

“As well as providing a good mix of new open market and affordable homes, we had been very keen to provide a modern GP building for the village.

“After almost six years of jointly developing plans and specifications for a new surgery, it is understandably very disappointing that the Coleridge Medical Practice have felt unable to proceed in the current circumstances.”

“Over the coming weeks, we will review the options available to us with our development partner Cavanna Homes.”

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