In December 2011, Havens Hospices withdrew plans to build a new adult hospice off Belton Way in Leigh. Since then, the charity has worked closely alongside planning officers at Southend, Rochford and Castle Point Councils and has announced it will resubmit a planning application for the same site by 20th July.
Havens Hospices Chief Executive, Andy Smith said, “Right now we simply do not have the space or the facilities to care for everyone who needs us. Our plans to build a new Fair Havens hospice have only ever been driven by the needs of local people and their families. The limitations of our current building make it increasingly difficult to meet their needs.
“To ensure good hospice care is available in the future, local people need a modern, purpose built hospice capable of offering the facilities and services available elsewhere in the UK and in our neighbouring towns.
“Our decision to resubmit our planning application has been made after months of careful reflection and review of our plans. After many meetings with Southend, Rochford and Castle Point Councils we have considered all available sites in the area. However surprising it may seem, all three Councils have concluded that there are no brownfield sites in the area suitable for a new hospice and, as agreed with them, we have gone on to review greenfield sites. Having done so, the site off Belton Way in Leigh uniquely meets our patients needs, and on that basis, we feel we have to resubmit our planning application.”
Dennis Rensch, Chair of Trustees, added, “Choosing any other site would mean compromising on what our patients and their families need and this is something we believe is unacceptable. We understand the news may be disappointing to some, but the Trustees genuinely believe we have made this decision in the best interests of the people we care for now, and those we’ll care for in years to come.”
Further information can be found at www.havenshospices.org.uk/newfairhavens or by calling 01702 220350