LETTER: Nothing is safe

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I feel that perhaps Phil Hamerton (Shoreham Herald letters, July 2), may also have missed the point given by Mr Guy and Beryl Ferrous-Guy, that there were once three major hospitals in our area, one right on our doorstep; Southlands Hospital which dealt with many issues.

It consisted of an anti-natal clinic, where my niece was born, medical wards and orthopaedic wards, where my aunt and I were inpatients and were very well treated and cared for – and where I myself happily worked.

He also describes the Southlands site as derelict – one should ask oneself why was this allowed to happen?

It was once a hospital held in high esteem, not only by the public, but also by many members of the medical profession.

Once the Harness Block was built, it seemed to be the writing was on the wall, for it was stripped, slowly, of all its vital assets, and the building neglected to the point that the officials could at last say it was no longer viable.

It would have to go for housing development.

It died while Worthing grew.

So now the people of Shoreham are stripped of their hospital, and they find they are having to travel to Worthing, and as far afield as Chichester, Bognor and Haywards Heath – which I suppose if you have a car, family or friends to take you is just about bearable.

But if you are not one of those people, this view is understandably not so welcome – such as the likes of two elderly couples in their 80s who told me they had spent most of the day travelling to and from Chichester, especially so when feeling unwell.

And as for Adur residents enjoying the facilities offered by the Sussex County Hospital, is Mr Hamerton not aware that the county is struggling to cope with the needs of residents of Brighton & Hove and surrounding areas, and so would be hard pushed to cope with those of us in Adur and Worthing districts.

I was told Southlands used to help them out.

Mr Guy is right to mourn the loss of Southlands – we all should who enjoyed the benefits of the hospital – a hospital that so many are so keen to put down/degrade.

And what’s not to say that what happened to the Harness Block will not in time also happen to the existing building.

Nothing is safe.

Plus is it not just possible with all the housing development going on in and around Worthing, Shoreham and surrounding areas, that we could find ourselves, in the not too distant future, in need of another such local hospital?

Roberta Edwards

Parkside

Shoreham

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