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Is Hightown Village Surgery at risk of closing yet again?

Dear Formby Bubble:

Is Hightown Village Surgery at risk of closing yet again?

Statement from Ellis Hall-Lyon, the owner of Hightown Village Surgery:

The residents of Hightown and surrounding areas have worked extremely hard over the last 6 years to ensure that Hightown Village Surgery remains open to provide essential GP services for the village and surrounding areas.

Sadly, as the owner of the building, I am concerned that NHS England and NHS Property Services (NHSPS) have no intention of committing to continue to provide this essential GP service.

We have charged NHSPS the same annual rent since 2009 and the present lease expired almost one year ago on 24 October 2022. We have tried numerous methods to engage NHSPS in negotiations but to no avail.

NHSPS have breached the lease in several areas;

• They have been in arrears of rental payments for 251 days since 2017, amounting to interest

fines of £511.46 of taxpayers' money.

• They have defaulted on completing decoration/renovation works that were required in the

final year of the lease (2022).

• They have failed to pay the building insurance for 2022-23 which was due in January 2023,

despite numerous reminders.

• They are subletting the building to the present GP service provider (PC24) without any

rental/lease agreement in place.

Each of these breaches individually could result in forfeiture of the lease and potentially their removal from the building. I am of the belief that these breaches are deliberate in an attempt to force my hand into taking legal action to remove NHSPS from the building. This in turn would potentially allow NHS England to close the surgery and divert blame away from themselves.

All I want is to retain the GP services in Hightown that we have all fought so hard for, with a new lease to show their commitment and at the market rent. On previous occasions, the power of the people of Hightown has surprised NHS England and forced them to listen. If you feel strongly about this matter, I would urge you to contact the people below and express your views.

Simon Walmsley, Principal Property Manager, NHSPS T: 020 3890 9358

NHS Property Services Ltd

Regent House, 8th Floor, Heaton Lane, Stockport, SK4 1BS T: 0808 196 2045

If you email, I would be very grateful if you could cc me also:

Thank you for taking the time to read this post.

Ellis Hall-Lyon


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