|         10%|         20%|         30%|         40%|         50%|         60%|         70%|         80%|         90%|        100%|

These figures are correct as of 6-Oct-2016 and confirm that we’ve reached the total required to develop the Information and Support Centre!


If you would like any further information about the charity or ISC project, or if you would like us to send you a sponsor form so that you can help to raise money for the ISC project, please contact us.


What is Halesworth Health (HH)?
A registered Charity whose seven trustees are from the Patrick Stead Hospital (PSH) League of Friends, Cutlers Hill Surgery, Halesworth Community Nursing Care Fund (HCNCF), and local residents including a retired lawyer and a parish councillor. All are unpaid volunteers.

What is HH for?
To try to safeguard and future-proof integrated health and social care services in and around Halesworth. It is widely recognised that the integrated team approach with services all on one site – the surgery, the Rayner Green Resource (day) Centre, the community staff and, until the beds were closed, the hospital, – provides very good care. Because Halesworth is on the margin of different boundaries i.e. parliamentary, local government and health, we have often had to find local solutions to address our needs.

What’s happening with the project now?
Halesworth Health continues to work jointly with Campus group. Since the Playing Fields Association land is no longer available for development, it is proposed that the new purpose built health and social care facility will now be on the former Middle School Site, alongside sport and educational facilities. The healthcare building will include flexible use nursing care beds, community beds funded by the NHS and facilities specifically designed for patients with dementia. There will be a community hub to include NHS outpatient clinics. A housing with extra care scheme (very sheltered housing) is also proposed. The CCG (Great Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group) is still supportive of the plans, despite the delays.

Why this new development?
Halesworth and District has a very geographically isolated, elderly population, with a journey of almost 30 miles to any of the three District General Hospitals. Well over a third of the population are over 65 years of age, above the national and local area average. This is predicted to increase markedly in the next 20 years. Many people are living with multiple chronic illnesses, often including dementia. We therefore need excellent local integrated health and care services.
This is clearly in line with and reflects regional and national strategic thinking, especially as described in the report by NHS England in October 2014, ‘The NHS 5 year Forward View’ and the more recent ‘Sustainability and Transformation Plans’. These discuss and recommend various new ways of providing integrated health and care more locally.
The Patrick Stead Hospital (PSH) is a Victorian building, which has done an excellent job. It is however expensive to run and maintain and difficult to adapt or extend. It has been very clear for several years that there is no plan for any development and no available money for transforming the Patrick Stead Hospital. To do nothing was not an option, as we would have been left with no local services.

Who will pay for all this and manage the new facility?
Halesworth Health, after a rigorous selection process, given there was to be no NHS investment in buildings, chose a preferred independent care provider with whom to work together. This provider, Castlemeadow Care, has drawn up impressive plans to build and run the new facility; they will buy the land and pay for the construction and running costs of the new building. It’s important to note that within the building will be NHS funded community beds and outpatient clinics. The NHS will fund the beds as they’ve done in Patrick Stead, but the care home beds would be paid for in the usual way. This will be the NHS working in partnership with the independent care sector.

Who are Castlemeadow Care?
A family run, Norfolk based, high quality, independent care provider with four care homes in Norfolk. They have experience of residential, nursing, dementia and NHS beds as well as sheltered housing. They are run by an ex GP, Dr Sanjay Kaushal.

What is happening to the hospital now?
The CCG, after their public consultation in 2015, decided to close the hospital, but only when the new care facility was up and running. Unfortunately East Coast Community Healthcare (ECCH), the provider of services, was unable to maintain staffing levels, as the staff naturally became unsettled by the insecurity of impending closure, and delays and uncertainty in the project, so closed the beds and then finally withdrew their services contract on April 1st 2017. So there are now no beds available for community use. Downstairs is still used for people needing blood tests and we hope that soon all the consultant outreach clinics will be restored. This is under discussion between the CCG and the James Paget Hospital.
The garden room is still used by voluntary groups such as Parkinsons and Dementia Carers.

What about physiotherapy and podiatry?
Physiotherapy continues to be provided by ECCH in the building adjacent to the hospital, along with podiatry and some other community clinics.

What will happen to Patrick Stead Hospital in the future?
When the CCG eventually declares the hospital surplus to requirements, the owners of the building, NHS Property Services Ltd., will decide its future. Halesworth Health is keen to pursue with NHS organisations the reinvestment of funds from any sale, back into the local community.
The building itself could be bought for an alternative community use, via the ‘community right to bid scheme’, for around the market price, but it would still require funding for heavy running costs, so would need careful consideration.

What about the Rayner Green Resource Centre
This is an excellent day care facility for people who often have severe disability, and for many people with dementia. It enables multidisciplinary assessments, stimulating activities and also ensures carers can have important respite time. In the long run it enables people to remain living in their own home for longer, and prevents hospital admissions. It is jointly funded by health and by social care. The CCG want it to continue but are reviewing the way it is funded and used.

What about Minor Injuries?
A review of the contracts is taking place currently but it is intended that Cutlers Hill Surgery will continue to run the excellent minor injuries service from the surgery during working hours. This is really important to avoid people having to travel long distances to use A&E at James Paget Hospital – as they now have to in the evenings and weekends.

And how is the surgery coping without the Patrick Stead beds?
Without community beds and also without an out of hospital team it’s a struggle to keep people at home and to prevent patients being admitted inappropriately to the acute hospitals 30 miles away. Discussions are under way to ensure there is very soon an effective ‘out of hospital team’ working locally for this reason. That team would in the future work in conjunction with the new facility’s NHS community beds, when it finally is built, for patients unsuitable to be managed at home.

What is the timescale now?
The project for the middle school site is progressing well and it is intended to submit a joint planning application in July 2017. So the health and care facility could, subject to planning and other permissions, be built and ready in 2019.

Halesworth Health has been trying for several years to find an alternative solution for the time when Patrick Stead Hospital finally closes. While we would all prefer everything to be under NHS provision, the Health Authorities had repeatedly said over many years that there was no money or plan for investment in NHS facilities in Halesworth. The best alternative seemed to be a combination of the independent sector working with the NHS.

We are delighted to be able to report that Castlemeadow Care (CMC), an independent care provider, is still willing to commit to health and care facilities in Halesworth. This is despite delays in the original project, which has been under development for almost two years, and, as you may have read, the playing field land at Dairy Hill now not being available.

We are concerned that press reports from Halesworth Playing Fields Association (HPFA) suggested that CMC summarily ended the negotiations for the sale of the Dairy Hill site.  We do not think that this was the case. We understand that HPFA land could not be sold to CMC without a merger agreement between themselves and the Campus charity being well under way. When HPFA ended the merger discussions with Campus this effectively ended the negotiations for the sale of the land with CMC. We think it is important to make this point because CMC have committed so much time and expenditure in the last two years to this project, and have a clear vision for how the independent sector can work effectively in conjunction with NHS facilities.

Now the plan remains to build a care home, alongside housing with extra care apartments and bungalows, but these will now all be on part of the former Middle School site. The remainder of the Middle School site will be developed for sport and vocational education facilities, which we believe are an essential complement to our health project.

The 67-bedded care home will offer not only residential and nursing care facilities, including those for people with dementia, but will also include NHS funded beds and outpatient services. The Gt. Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) continue to commit to providing these much-needed local NHS services within the new building. As you will know, the inpatient beds at Patrick Stead Hospital remain closed due to staffing shortages. East Coast Community Healthcare has recently announced their withdrawal from the contract to run these beds and we await the CCG response to this. The outpatient services continue in the main building at PSH and in the physiotherapy block, but the CCG are considering various options for their future. There are now no community beds nor a hospital admission prevention team locally. This is placing a huge strain on local GP’s and District nurses looking after people in the community. Patients, including those terminally ill, are having to be admitted to the overcrowded acute district hospitals when they would be far better cared for locally. This experience has redoubled our commitment to reinstating these community beds within a new facility.

Cutlers Hill Surgery offers an excellent minor injuries service to help people avoid travelling to overcrowded, distant A&E departments; it’s vital to ensure that this service continues, and we are supporting the surgery in their efforts to achieve this.

A joint project group comprising Halesworth Health, Campus and CMC members is working hard to overcome various hurdles, and achieve our aims within the inevitable constraints of a smaller available site. We have very positive support from the District and County councils for the project, and hope to take the new joint project forward smoothly so that vital local health, care, and sports facilities can be achieved for Halesworth and the local area.



Halesworth Health have been working hard for 5 years in a joint project with the two local sports charities, Halesworth Campus Limited (HCL) and Halesworth Playing Fields Association (HPFA), to ensure NHS facilities and services are maintained and future proofed in this remote area. Gt. Yarmouth and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) made the decision in Autumn 2015 to close Patrick Stead Hospital (PSH), but only when new facilities were available.

Castlemeadow Care (CMC), an independent care provider, was to have built a new facility to include not only beds for residential, nursing and dementia care, but also NHS funded community beds and outpatient facilities, adjacent to the surgery on the current sports fields. The money raised from the sale of that land to CMC would have gone towards development of sports facilities on the former Middle School site.

We are very sorry to have to report that the Halesworth Playing Fields Association has recently withdrawn from the project meaning that the Dairy Hill land is no longer available. This is extremely disappointing. In a joint project, the most important factor is good communication. While there were clearly issues at times with both charities, sadly HPFA had refused to talk directly with HCL for the last 6 months, to address any problems or concerns between the two sports charities, without insisting on the presence of expensive solicitors from London.

The CCG are very supportive of this project and have recently repeated their statement that they will fund NHS beds, and wish to see outpatient services within the new facility. We are pleased to report that CMC are still keen to develop health and care facilities locally. They and HH are now working with HCL to try to provide health, care and sports facilities, all on the former Middle School site. It is vital that this is allowed to happen so that local people are not let down again.

Because Halesworth is so remote and with an elderly demographic there are many things needed in addition to the current excellent primary health care team including
• A good range of outpatient facilities and services locally.
• Continuing excellent day care facilities.
• Supportive dementia services, as we have now.
• A well resourced, locally based, multidisciplinary team to try to keep people at home rather than admit to acute hospitals in conjunction with:
• Community NHS funded beds – always available – to treat those people who don’t need an acute hospital admission, but who can’t be managed at home.
• Excellent palliative and end of life care, both at home and in local community beds.
• A good nursing home, as there are none locally (the nearest is Priory Paddocks, Darsham 7 miles and difficult if no car.)
• Extra beds for high standard, evidence based dementia care.
• ‘Housing with extra care’ to try to maintain people’s independence as long as possible.
• Information and support for people with serious illness.

Meanwhile East Coast Community Healthcare is still unable to recruit nurses for the beds in PSH, which as a result remain ‘temporarily’ closed. They had promised to re-open the beds if they could find enough staff, but have this week announced that they are withdrawing from their contract with the CCG, giving 3 months notice. We await the response from the CCG.  This lack of community beds is putting immense pressure on the GP’s and District Nurses who are struggling, without adequate admission prevention services, to keep people at home and to avoid unnecessary acute admissions to the overcrowded district hospitals, including people at the end of their lives.

The outpatient clinics were recently moved to very unsatisfactory facilities in the physiotherapy block, but due to widespread community complaints to the CCG many of the clinics are now back in PSH. We continue to monitor that situation.

The excellent Rayner Green Resource (day) Centre, for people with severe disability including dementia, is apparently to remain open but the way services are provided is being reviewed by the CCG, who are concerned about costs in this time of severe, overall NHS funding shortages.

It is vital that all these services are available locally and we will do our best to ensure this happens. We are also determined to ensure the CMC/NHS project can now continue, even without HPFA involvement, and will keep you informed of developments.


  Shown L-R, Ben Townsend (manager of Halesworth Golf Club), Richard Kell (HCNCF Chairman), Ted Edwards (ISC Chairman), Ian Stannard (last year’s club captain) and Andy Jennings (this year’s club captain)

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HCNCF trustees Barbara Kell, Ted Edwards, Frances Lloyd, Rachel Booth and Jane Edwards with League of Friends chair Karen Kerridge and trustees and members Andrew Payne, Josie Dutton, Judith Mesquita, Roger Smith-Howell, Sylvia Hayward, Muriel Barber, Rosemary Smith-Howell and Olive Meen




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