A TOWN councillor has welcomed plans to relocate the health centre in Wallingford but said there are concerns about accessibility.

Wallingford Medical Practice, in Reading Road, could be moving to the town's Winterbrook Meadows development site to the north of the Wallingford bypass.

Councillor Katharine Keats-Rohan said the feedback from residents so far have been positive but there are some concerns about accessibility.

READ MORE: New premises could be built for medical practice to relocate 

Developers Berkeley Homes have planning permission for 502 new homes including an extra care facility, but plans are yet to be finalised.

Herald Series: The medical practice in Reading Road (Google Maps)The medical practice in Reading Road (Google Maps)

A parcel of land within the site was previously earmarked for a primary school but Oxfordshire County Council would prefer to site the school in another part of the town.

It is now hoped a new surgery could be built on the land for the GP surgery to accommodate the town's growing population.

 “It’s not a done deal,” said Mrs Keats-Rohan. “There’s lots of negotiations to be done but we badly need to find a new site for our medical practice.

“It does need to be a bigger and more integrated primary care hub. There are going to have to expand somewhere and they have looked at the options and this site gives them the room to do it.

“It’s got a very long way to go but they wanted to gauge opinions and so far it does seem like there is support.

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“A lot of people have asked about accessibility and this is something I’ve discussed with the medical practise team because it’s not just Wallingford it’s people in surrounding areas so there needs to be help accessing it by bus, walking and cycling.

“This is something we’re discussing with the developers as the whole development needs to be fully integrated with the whole town.

Herald Series: Land at Winterbrook (Berkeley Homes)Land at Winterbrook (Berkeley Homes)

“The town council is certainly behind them. The single biggest infrastructure issue at the moment is how we’re going to get the primary care hub that we need.

“All the council can do is be supportive as we won’t be the ones calling the shots.”

Andy Stevens, the deputy chair of trustees for the Wallingford Accessible Boat Club, said he understands why there are concerns about accessibility but thinks the move is a good thing.

He said: “The move would possibly be further for some and closer for others but I think people are just frightened of what they don’t know.

Herald Series: (Credit: Wallingford Medical Practice)(Credit: Wallingford Medical Practice)

“I think it will be welcomed and people who aren’t necessarily able to get around will be able to use voluntary services like they have at Wallingford Community Hospital.

READ MORE: Didcot Mayor calls for better health are before more housing developments

“So I would think nothing really changes – we should move it to the next place and they do need to provide a larger facilities because as a town we are really exploding with the new houses being built and are still being built.”


Read more from this author

This story was written by Gee Harland, she joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Wallingford and Didcot.

Get in touch with her by emailing: Gee.harland@newsquest.co.uk

Follow her on Twitter @Geeharland

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