Plans for expanded medical service in St Ives are approved

An artist's impression illustrating what the new surgery could look like

An artist's impression illustrating what the new surgery could look like - Credit: Archant

A planning application that could see new medical facilities in St Ives has been given the go-ahead by Huntingdonshire District Council.

The application, which was submitted in February, is for a first floor extension to the Cromwell surgery, located in Cromwell Place, which could provide additional consulting rooms, as well as administration and isolation rooms.

The proposal was recommended for approval at the development management committee meeting on October 15, however, councillors opted to defer the application in order to allow council officers to consult the Wildlife Trust on matters relating to ecology.

However, at a meeting on November 19, councillors approved the surgery extension.

Extended services could include health visitor clinics, counselling, a satellite clinic for sleep studies, nurse-led Parkinson’s and dementia clinics, and wound management and tissue viability specialists.

An increase in the number of mental health professionals and sexual health clinics are also proposed.

The planning application stated: “The expansion would allow the practice to consistently provide a full range of care functions, in a more integrated and effective way with the wider health community, providing more local care to the population of St Ives.

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“In addition, the town centre location is sustainable in terms of transport links with a number of town centre car parking locations easily within walking distance.”

Objections to the plans were lodged in the run up to the meeting, with the St Ives Civic Society and the Huntingdonshire District Council’s conservation officer raising concerns over the design of the proposed extension.

In addition to these concerns, the conservation officer also highlighted worries about the impact the extension could have on the Grade II-listed building which the surgery currently uses to provide GP services.

The officer stated: “The public benefit of this development is also considered to be limited to the patients of the surgery where as the conservation of a heritage asset is considered by Government to be a public benefit for the entire population.”

Planning permission to change the use of a residential property into the current GP surgery was granted back in 2002.