Leeds & West Yorkshire

Huddersfield Royal Infirmary: Protest against A&E move proposals

NHS march
Image caption People marched from Huddersfield Royal Infirmary to Greenhead Park

Hundreds of people have marched in Huddersfield against the proposed closure of the town's A&E department.

Placards reading "save our A&E" and "Our NHS is here to stay" were waved along the route from Huddersfield Royal Infirmary (HRI) to Greenhead Park.

Under the proposals, all emergency acute and high-risk planned care would be brought together at Calderdale Royal Hospital in neighbouring Halifax.

NHS Greater Huddersfield CCG said no decision had been made on the plans.

The proposals, which could save the NHS £31m, would see a new site developed in Acre Mills, Huddersfield, as a hospital for planned care, but with no A&E.

Image copyright Empics
Image caption Over 7,500 people responded to a public consultation on the proposals

A public consultation recently revealed 60% of 7,500 respondents felt they would be negatively hit.

Karl Deitch, from the Hands off HRI group, said the march was to show the town "won't take it lying down".

"We're not stopping, they need to take a look and think - we have to go to a plan B, we need another alternative," he said.

Speakers at a rally at Greenhead Park included Barry Sheerman, Labour MP for Huddersfield, and Jason McCartney, Conservative MP for Colne Valley.

Several demonstrations against the proposals have now been staged, with a petition signed by more than 63,000 supporters.

A spokesperson for NHS Greater Huddersfield CCG said: "The CCGs' governing bodies will make the decision on the outcome of the consultation and next steps regarding the proposed changes to local hospital and community health services at a meeting in parallel on 20 October."

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