Opposition leader calls for a hospital for Hove

Posted On 03 Apr 2018 at 4:21 am

Brighton and Hove’s Conservative opposition leader Tony Janio has called for a hospital for Hove.

Councillor Tony Janio

Councillor Janio said that a hospital, containing a diagnostic centre, GP hub and small A&E unit, should be built when houses go up in Toad’s Hole Valley.

There would be space for the community facility now that a new secondary school no longer looked likely, he said.

Hove had its own general hospital, in Sackville Road, until the 1990s. The 19th century building has been converted into flats and is now called Tennyson Court.

A replacement hospital was promised but late in the day it was downgraded. Hove Polyclinic was built in the late 1990s, a few years after the old Hove General Hospital closed.

Councillor Janio said: “Chatting to hundreds of residents across my ward of Hangleton and Knoll over the years, I have noticed a thin but consistent theme: many, but certainly not all, think they were ‘robbed’ in the ‘merger’ with Brighton.

“Not disliking Brightonians, of course, they have noticed that, with the majority of Labour councillors hailing from Brighton, most of the ‘goodies’ over the last 20 years have been directed eastwards along the coast.

“As a future leader of the council, I will favour neither of the former boroughs, seeking to move forward as a unified city.

“To assist in this Hangleton and Knoll may be able to help, as it has one of the last remaining undeveloped areas in the city: Toad’s Hole Valley.

“The planning guide suggests the area should be developed with a wide range of housing, office and business space, community facilities, shops and cafés, open space and a secondary school.

“Following Labour’s chaotic catchment disaster, we know an extra school is no longer required.

“So, along with my Hove Park colleagues, who have called for a clinic to be built in the area, and my fellow Hangleton and Knoll councillors, who are concerned about the fragile state of GP services, I am appealing to Labour to substitute the no longer required school with ‘a hospital for Hove’.

The Royal Sussex County Hospital is undergoing a £485 million modernisation

“Thanks to the Conservative government, the largest investment in Brighton is the multimillion-pound Royal Sussex County Hospital development.

“This will give the city one of the finest teaching hospitals in the country.

“In the UK, somebody dies from cancer every four minutes – and the new techniques that are available to help fight this terrible disease, such as early diagnostic imaging, have been shown to improve patient outcomes.

“Across the country, multidisciplinary community diagnostic centres are being built that are giving GPs and patients faster and greatly improved cancer screening access to diagnostic services from within their communities.

“A diagnostic centre, as well as a GP hub and small A&E unit, would be the perfect friendship-gift to Hove – and Portslade – and achieve some parity of health services with Brighton.

“Let’s build ‘a hospital for Hove’.”

  1. Valerie Paynter Reply

    Where the Polyclinic, Mill View & housing now stands in Hove, allotments were terminated and left vacant for many, many years as East Sussex County Council, Hove Borough Council and Brighton council argued over plans to put a general hospital there.

    An orthopaedic consultant who used to come to the RSCH to do bone scans on us transplant patients on an annual basis (no longer happens) told me that the hospital plans fircthat site had been scandalously abandoned because the 3 authorities simply could not agree on what should go there.

    The RSCH is on just two acres of land he told me. Far less than needed for the growing city. So politicians & council officers are to blame for the loss of a newbuild RSCH on a generous space in Hove with adequate access & egress by road and susequent poor use if space fir bith Mill View & the Polyclinic with remaining land being given over more recently to housebuilding.

    The new RSCH is instead to be squashed onto the existing 2 acres with hell to come access/egress wise to use it in years to come.

  2. MikeV Reply

    The irony of a Tory councillor calling for a new hospital when it is his government which has underfunded the NHS to such a degree that the hospitals we already have can no longer cope. Besides, since when did a local councillor get to decide on the health budget?
    This is nothing less than a brazen, insincere, vote-catching ‘offer’ which will be forgotten immediately after the May local elections.

  3. S Johnson Reply

    MikeV might be surprised to learn that a local councillor chairs a committee that decides a significant share of the local health budget: Cllr Daniel Yates of the Health & Wellbeing Board.
    And while I hold no brief for the Tories (or any other party), they’ve spent more on health than Labour as costs rise, although the money might have gone further without Andrew Lansley’s wholesale and largely pointless reorganisation.
    In any event, Cllr Janio is entitled to disagree with his party colleagues in the Government.
    The reality, though, is that he shows no signs of having canvassed local health experts to see if they believe that limited resources would be better spent on the site in his ward (or next to it), or whether taxpayers and patients would get better value by spending our money on direct patient care rather than capital projects.
    Approval for the current massive capital spending in Brighton, on the Royal Sussex site, has taken years to achieve. The site is cramped and, even with the new buildings and extra beds, I doubt it will be perfect, but it will almost certainly be an improvement on what we have now and had in the recent past.
    Besides, clinicians from the hospital trust already see patients in Cllr Janio’s ward, at the polyclinic.
    He shouldn’t be criticised for coming up with an idea, but I’d have been much more impressed if it had been thrashed out with patient groups, medics and the health commissioners to see whether this was a plan with a genuine chance of making best use of the land in question. I suspect it will sink without trace.

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