Hope re­mains over health cen­tre plans

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Front Page -

PLANS for a new health cen­tre in King’s Av­enue will be con­sid­ered by Ash­ford coun­cil next month de­spite be­ing scrapped in Oc­to­ber.

Bosses from NHS East­ern and Coastal Kent de­cided to give up on build­ing the £14 mil­lion health cen­tre at Kings Av­enue over fi­nan­cial con­cerns. They said it did not of­fer “value for money”.

By con­tin­u­ing with the plan­ning process it is hoped the door can be “left open” for fu­ture de­vel­op­ment.

Al­most £1.5 mil­lion was spent on site sur­veys and the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion be­fore the plug was pulled.

Pri­mary care trust bosses have said they tried to keep the project alive but found it would cause an an­nual short­fall of al­most £800,000.

Ash­ford coun­cil plan­ning com­mit­tee mem­bers will de­cide on Jan­uary 6 whether to give per­mis­sion for a new health cen­tre and 66 new homes.

A £60,000 play­ground would also have to be built if and when construction be­gins.

Work would have to be­gin within three years or plan­ning per­mis­sion would need to be granted again.

The ap­pli­ca­tion has been rec­om­mended for ap­proval.

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