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This is what will happen to our hospital

Letter of the Week Wendy Senior, Dewsbury  

Dear Sir,

The ‘Save Dewsbury Hospital Services’ group attended the Let’s Talk event at the Oakwell Centre at Dewsbury Hospital, advertised “to hear the public’s view on the changes planned, how to make services better, and to please come along and tell us what you think.”

This was not what the meeting was about. Two doctors from Dewsbury Hospital were there to tell us what was going to happen.

They said the plans have been passed, this is what is going to happen: the Bronte Towers building will be demolished and everything apart from six beds will be moved to Pinderfields. The old Staincliffe Wing will also be demolished.

Bronte Towers Maternity Unit was built to replace Moorlands, Crossley and Batley maternity homes, about 35 years ago. Now, the Trust says the building is old and costs too much money to maintain; same with the Staincliffe building; only six beds left in the Ridings building for pregnant ladies in our area; an epidural  will not be available at Dewsbury. We are also losing intensive care high dependency services; the children’s ward has already been moved to Pinderfields Hospital, where every service is being developed – 88 extra beds for in-patients.

There was a young woman at the meeting who had to take her young son, who needed regular hospital treatment, to Pinderfields. It caused travelling difficulties as she had another child to care for.

Dewsbury is classed as a deprived area; we have more need than Wakefield of a good hospital with specialised services.

But there we are. We were told when ‘Meeting the Challenge’ debates began, there were three options. It soon became obvious there were no consultations – a choice had been made before any discussions were made at these meetings.

It was a farce from start to finish; all that money wasted.

It would be nice if we had more people to support our group. Jo Cox MP came but left before the meeting began.

A few years ago Dewsbury Hospital had no debt. People from this area had paid for our hospital services and now Stephen Eames, Chief Executive of Mid Yorkshire Trust, decides to demolish our hospital buildings.

I asked what would happen to any money received from building on Bronte Towers and Staincliffe sites and I was told it would go to the government treasury.

This is what will happen to our hospitals by 2017. Remind your doctor that you want an appointment at Dewsbury Hospital, not Pinderfields.



Fight for our home town

From: Beth Prescott, Lichfield Road, Dewsbury


I am writing to voice my support for the proposal for a Dewsbury Town Council put forward by Mark Eastwood in last week’s paper and to express my keenness to get involved in this project and help in any way I can.

I’ll admit, I wasn’t even a twinkle in my mother’s eye in 1974 when Kirklees Council was formed and Dewsbury Borough Council was lost.

But having grown up in Dewsbury, I know that something needs to be done to bring decision-making back to Dewsbury.

The way things are is not working. We can either sit on the sidelines and continue to complain whilst maintaining the status quo, or we can work together to make a change for the better.

I know what I will be doing. I am Dewsbury born and raised and I hope that one day I will raise my own children here. I want to do anything I can to restore Dewsbury to its former glory.

This is a fantastic idea by Mark. Nothing good in life ever comes easy but I am sure that if we all get behind this, work together on it and fight passionately for our home town, we can do this.

This is our responsibility, this is our time to do something about it, this is our town we are fighting for. I hope many others will join this cause.



Is this the same Tory?

From: A. Wilson, Carlton Road, Dewsbury

Dear Sir,

In response to a story last week regarding bringing back the Town Council to Dewsbury.

Is this the same Dewsbury East Conservative candidate who has lost four times at the last four local elections?

Is this the same person who worked so closely with our previous MP, who left Dewsbury to suffer at the hands of the Tory government and concentrated his efforts in the leafy suburbs?

I have to ask myself whether he truly means what he says or is he just being expedient, knowing that this is just another way of him being defeated at the ballot box.

Well done Coun Kane for showing some realism.



Keep roads safe for pupils

From: Name & address 


Dear Sir,

As a grandparent of pupils at the Windmill CoE Primary School in Birstall, I am extremely concerned that there will no longer be a school crossing attendant after the current one retires. Kirklees claim there is no funding to provide one, so they are putting children’s lives at risk.

I realise all schools have problems with traffic but the Windmill school is located near the Batley Girls’ High along Windmill Lane, whose pupils travel from outside Birstall by coach, mini-bus, taxi etc, causing severe congestion.

Add to this the regular service buses and parents collecting children and there is often gridlock, then drivers become frustrated and drive off at speed.

Our children deserve to be able to cross the road safely, but with no traffic control a serious accident is inevitable.

I implore our new MP, local councillors and most of all, parents, to contact Kirklees to make sure they do something to keep these roads safe for children to cross before a child is injured.


Thanks for kind words

From: David Honeybell,  Heckmondwike

Dear Sir,

I would like to thank Jack Hesketh for his few kind words (last week’s Forum).

Thank you for bracketing me with those socialist icons, Len McCluskey and Ken Livingstone. You make me feel so very proud and honoured.

As for my words helping to boost the Conservative party vote, Jo Cox MP held Batley and Spen with an increased majorit and Paula Sherriff MP gained Dewsbury and Mirfield from the Tories.

On a serious note: in last week’s Ed Lines, I found myself agreeing when it asked where all the extra doctors and other medical staff would be found to run our NHS seven days a week.

Nobody knows the answer to that question, including the PM.

I soon found myself at odds though when Danny Lockwood once again gave his support to privatising our NHS.

All our NHS needs is to be funded properly and then administered by people who really believe in an NHS, and not as it is now, run by Tory appointed puppets, in quangos such as the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS trust and their partners in crime, the Clinical Commissioning Groups.

The  CCGs should be scrapped; but if they are required at all, why do we need three to cover Huddersfield, North Kirklees and Wakefield?

With chief executives on £120k, chairmen on £110k, finance officers on £90,000, it’s no wonder they stick to the orders of the government piper.

And with 211 CCGs nationwide, millions could be saved by some joining forces, or better still, being abolished.

Privatisation is not the way, but proper funding and much better management must surely be the best way forward.

Also last week, on page 10, in ‘MP Cox’s vision’, you quote Jo Cox saying “Labour needs to decide who and what it is for”.

The answer should not be in doubt.

The ‘who’ is the working class and the ‘what’ is the trades union movement.

Middle Britain, middle England or the middle class are able to look after themselves.

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