Time for a GP Surgery in Kingsway

All of Quedgeley to benefit from new Kingsway surgery

Ten years ago I called on the CEO of the Glos Primary Care Trust (PCT) with Quedgeley Councillor Jackie Hall. We asked about the process for applying for a new surgery in Kingsway as the number of homes in the area increased.

Since then Kingsway has changed from a messy construction site on ex-RAF Quedgeley land, to a large village in its own right. The NHS has been restructured, and Jan and Jackie have retired from their roles.

And during that time the two existing GP surgeries in Quedgeley (behind Tescos) got busier and busier: and some of my constituents frustrated about the difficulties of getting appointments.

But ten years on, and many many meetings and telephone calls later, finally the last planning hurdles for a giant new GPs surgery in Kingsway have now been cleared.

Why has it all taken so long, what will it be like and who will benefit?

Developers in Kingsway started to market their homes just as we went into our country’s worst ever peace time recession. Sales faltered and so it took much longer to reach the numbers of residents required before the NHS would consider a surgery.

The business of commissioning what sort of surgery (i.e. negotiations between the NHS and GP’s practices) to go for was hard and took time.

Then the GP surgery decided to build on a different place to that on the original master plan. This meant extensive commercial discussions with the developer. The size of the site was much bigger and the surgery much more ambitious (it will include a mini operatkingswaying theatre), which also meant new architectural designs from a different architect. Commercial negotiations, partly conducted through a third party consultant, dragged on.

It also involved planning applications in a part of Kingsway not originally intended for a GP surgery. Planning approval was required first on the principles and now on the detail. That’s also taken time.

All the way though I’ve hosted meetings, called all the parties together, rang partners in the project for answers, asked Councillors to support action, and above all have just kept prodding away at everyone to make things happen. The Kingsway surgery has been on my project list for a very long time.

This is the side of being an MP which few people know about. It’s invisible work. There are no great speeches and certainly no great audiences. It doesn’t make the headlines and doesn’t change the world. But it will make a difference to a lot of people in Kingsway and Quedgeley.

I like doing things that are real. The things that give me quiet satisfaction include persuading the government to build a new secondary school, getting more train services to Gloucester written into a train operator’s franchise, ensuring the Blackfriars LDO was approved by government, and ensuring the bid for Estate Regeneration. A grant from Sport England for the Athletics track or Matson Rugby Club’s roof or the HLF for Llanthony Priory and St Mary de Crypt. The surgery at Kingsway is exactly one of these practical changes that I’m most excited about.

There is of course a ‘but’. The surgery still needs 12 months to be built. We will all have to be patient. But it is the end of the beginning.

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Director of Primary Care at NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, Helen Goodey said:

“The CCG has ambitious and exciting plans to improve and expand practices across Gloucestershire, and this development is really positive news for the local area. The new premises will mean that patients can benefit from facilities that are fit for modern healthcare and will support the provision of high quality care. The new surgery will also offer an attractive work environment for GPs and other members of the practice team.”

Dr Jon Unwin, Senior Partner at Rosebank Health, said:

“We are really pleased and excited that our plans for a new, contemporary surgery are coming to fruition. We look forward to all our patients, both old and new, benefiting from this new development.”

Wyndham Parry, Practice Manager at Rosebank Health, said:

“With several new housing developments anticipated in the area over the next few years and a growing population, the new surgery, which will be located off Rudloe Drive, will be ideally located to provide primary care services for the local area for years to come. It will be very closely linked to the existing Rosebank Health Surgeries to ensure the right support and services are in place. Our ambition is to create an attractive, modern, light and airy building which will be welcoming to both patients and staff and we will be excited to see this progress over the coming months.”