Ground breaking ceremony for the new health and wellbeing centre for Dartmouth
Dartmouth’s deputy mayor, Graham Evans along with Dr Tony Anderson from Dartmouth Medical Practice and Iris Pritchard, President of Dartmouth Caring broke the ground to mark the start of the building of Dartmouth’s brand new Health and Wellbeing centre.
The ceremony marks the start of the £4m programme that will provide a purpose built centre for community health services and clinics alongside the local GP practice and a pharmacy. The centre, based at the top of town in Dartmouth, is planned to open in the summer of 2022.
The building project is being led by Torbay and South Devon’s strategic estates partner, gbpartnerships with the building work carried out by Westcountry building firm, Classic Builders.
The ceremony was hosted by Sir Richard Ibbotson, Chair of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and was attended by representatives from the Town and District Councils, and a number of local groups including Dartmouth Leagues of Friends, Dartmouth Medical Centre and its Patient Participation Group, Dartmouth Caring and governors of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust.
Sir Richard Ibbotson Chairman for Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust commented:
"It is so good to see the long-awaited start of the building of what we believe will be a fantastic facility for the people of Dartmouth and the surrounding communities. It is fitting that we have been able to mark this occasion with Mrs Pritchard and Dr Anderson who have given so much to supporting the health and wellbeing of local people.”
Cllr Hilary Bastone, South Hams District Council’s Deputy Leader said:
“This is a really positive step towards Dartmouth getting a top notch health and wellbeing facility. A hub like this can provide so much under one roof and I believe that this is very much needed locally.”
Now that work has begun on site South Hams District Council has negotiated the use of the nearby sports pitches, for a limited period over the height of the tourist season to ensure that the build does not have an adverse impact of visitors to Dartmouth being able to park and travel into Town. The field will provide a temporary carpark for July and August only.
Cllr Jonathan Hawkins, South Hams District Councillor for Dartmouth added:
"This new health and wellbeing centre will provide state of the art new facilities all on one site so is a huge improvement on what we now have for Dartmouth and it’s surrounding parishes."
Cllr Graham Evans, Deputy Mayor for Dartmouth Town Council said:
“It is really good news to see this investment into new facilities for our town. It will make a real difference for local people to effectively have a one-stop shop for access to health and wellbeing facilities. I am sure our community staff, GPs and volunteers will all appreciate working from a building that is up to date, fit for purpose and can house everyone alongside each other.”
The centre will give local people access to a broad range of health and wellbeing services in one place, by bringing together GPs, community nurses, therapists, Dartmouth Caring and a pharmacy.
Good public transport links as well as on-site parking – and the overflow parking for the park and ride is also being upgraded with new hardstanding parking spaces which will make the site even more accessible.
Development Director at gbpartnerships, Ian Tuddenham, said:
“This is an exciting development for Dartmouth and we are delighted to be working in partnership with the Trust to deliver the state-of-the-art Health and Wellbeing Centre. This is the first project to start on site, in what we expect will be a number of developments through SDH Innovations Partnership, the joint venture between Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and gbpartnerships.”