Campaigners celebrate breakthrough in Ambulance campaign
Campaigners fighting to save Hinckley's Ambulance Station have welcomed news of a breakthrough in the campaign.
Last Autumn East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) proposed closing Hinckley's Ambulance Station along with 65 others in the East Midlands and replacing them with 13 "Hubs" the nearest of which to the Hinckley area would be in Leicester.
Now papers produced by EMAS recommend keeping an Ambulance Station in Hinckley.
Cllr Michael Mullaney Lib Dem Parliamentary spokesman for Bosworth, who helped organise a petition to save the Ambulance Station, and proposed a motion to the Borough Council backing the Ambulance Station, has welcomed the news that EMAS has listened to residents' concerns and is proposing keeping an Ambulance Station in Hinckley.
Michael Mullaney said "This is great news. Local people strongly support keeping an Ambulance station for the Hinckley area. The Hinckley urban area including Burbage, Barwell and Earl Shilton is one of the biggest population centres in Leicestershire and needs an Ambulance Station
"I am glad that it appears that EMAS have listened to local people and will keep an Ambulance Station."
EMAS have published a report which they are taking to the Adults, Communities and Health Scrutiny Commission meeting on March 11th. In the report they have changed their earlier plans and now propose 27 Hubs and Ambulance Stations being kept, as opposed to having only 13 Hubs in the original plans. The documents reveal that one of the Ambulance Stations will be in Hinckley.
Michael Mullaney added "The final decision is not until March 25th so we'll keep up the pressure until then, but this is a brilliant breakthrough in the campaign to keep Hinckley Ambulance Station"
Cllr David Bill who leads on health matters at the Borough Council says " We have had to work tremendously hard to achieve this. As soon as we became aware of the threat we visited the Nottingham HQ of the Ambulance Service to put our case for the retention of the Hinckley Ambulance Station. We have since attended many meetings and consultation exercises around the region and in our own St Marys Church here in Hinckley to stress the argument over and over again.
"As is so often the case we were the only group to tackle this head-on apart from the Trade Unions who worked alongside us and my friends in Save Our Services who provided immense help with the petitions.
"Let's hope we have finally won !"