Ashby District Hospital 'not fit for purpose' and will close

Ashby District Hospital Image copyright Google
Image caption Over the years services at Ashby District Hospital have declined

A Leicestershire hospital branded "not fit for purpose" is to close.

Ashby District Hospital, on Leicester Road, in Ashby-De-La-Zouch, was created in 1897 and currently provides 16 respite care beds and outpatient clinics.

A clinical commissioning group said the Victorian building needed £900,000 of essential repairs and was underused, with services declining over the years.

A public consultation found 52% of people agreed with the closure.

NHS West Leicestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (WLCCG), which made the decision to shut the hospital with Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, said it plans to improve the services and move them into the community later this year.

The group said it hopes to fund extra nurses and provide more services, using different ways to care for people in their own homes.

'Best quality healthcare'

Dr Nick Wilmott, from WLCCG, said: "The outpatient facilities at the moment are not fit for purpose.

"Part of our plans now are to provide state-of-the-art outpatient facilities, a greater range of specialities and more services closer to people's homes."

Jamie McMahon, Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for North-West Leicestershire, who was at a public meeting earlier where the plans were discussed, said: "This is an opportunity to make sure Ashby gets the best quality healthcare services locally, even if it is a great shame that the hospital is having to close."

He added there were no promises made by the NHS bodies about the future of the 19th Century building.

More than 200 people, out of almost 400 who responded to the consultation, said they would prefer to move services into the community, which was also the preferred option of the WLCCG.

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