HOPES of seeing a ‘world-class’ health centre created on the Frodsham College site took a significant step closer to becoming a reality this week.
Landowner Cheshire County Council has commissioned a plan for developing medical and sports facilities at the Princeway site when the school closes in 2009.
Chester Primary Care Trust has also indicated to the county it is interested in the site.
Frodsham Town Council is urging the PCT and council not to pass up the opportunity.
Yorkshire-based developer United Healthcare Developments Ltd has been lined up to build a medical centre on behalf of the PCT to bring Frodsham’s two GP surgeries and other healthcare services under one roof.
But until now the search for suitable land has proved fruitless.
In a letter to Frodsham Forward, the county’s director of children’s services, Joan Feenan, said: 'It’s important to get an overall picture of what can be achieved on the college site in the future, taking into consideration local interests.
‘Children’s services, with the support of the county property management service, has commissioned external consultants to develop an initial feasibility plan that will try to incorporate a number of initiatives highlighted by different organisations linked with the Frodsham community.’
Town councillor Tony Hinkins said the county council’s response was ‘vaguely reassuring’ but pressure must be maintained to ensure the provision of a ‘world-class health centre for Frodsham’.
He said: ‘For many years this community has been engaged in an exhausting search for a site and, having apparently found one, we must not lose it.’
Patrick Milroy, senior partner at The Knoll surgery, said: ‘We would like any site in Frodsham that has sufficient space to accommodate the growing requirements of general practice and that would be accessible to as many patients as possible so that we can go forward with this project that has been lingering for some years.
‘We have known for a couple of years that the college site might be available but these wheels move very slowly and we have had so many disappointments in the past that we are not counting our chickens.’