Residents of TQ6 asked for views on former cottage hospital site

Dartmouth and Kingswear Community Hospital

Published: 29 November 2021

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and Dartmouth Town Council are working together to explore whether the community can buy the former Dartmouth Hospital site, and whether its redevelopment could include uses specifically to benefit people in and around Dartmouth. A final call is now being made to residents of TQ6, asking for their views on what new facilities they would like to see on the site. Leaflets are being distributed to homes in the area from today and the closing date for people to respond has been extended to Friday 10 December.

So far, more than 250 responses have been received to a survey being collated independently by health and social care consumer champion Healthwatch in Devon, Plymouth and Torbay, on behalf of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust and Dartmouth Town Council. People’s responses could influence how the former hospital site is developed in future, if Dartmouth Town Council is successful in developing a community bid for the site.

Dartmouth Town Councillor, Ged Yardy, said: “We hope as many local people as possible will share their views with us, so that we can reflect what the community would like to see in a development brief for the site. This is a unique opportunity for the community to come together and have a say in what happens to part of our town’s waterfront in future.

“We are working hard to create an economically viable bid for this site over the coming months. It’s bigger than anything we have had to fund before and timescales are tight. There is, of course, a possibility we won’t be able to pull together all the funding needed to buy and develop the site, but people’s views will be included in a development brief that we would share with other interested parties, if the site has to be sold on the open market.”

Adrien Cooper, Interim Director of Environment for Torbay and South Devon added: “We no longer need the former hospital for healthcare and we are preparing to sell the site to help fund the new, £4.8m Health and Wellbeing Centre being built at the top of the town. This will bring together all the current servies from Dartmouth Clinic and Dartmouth Medical Practice with space for community nurses, therapists, social care workers, as well as Dartmouth Caring and a pharmacy. We are supporting Dartmouth Town Council to explore whether a community bid for the site is possible, because it means local people would have a real say in any future development there.”

The survey is live until 10 December. People can access the survey online at bit.ly/cottagehospital

Printed copies of the survey are also being distributed to a range of local venues for collection and return via Freepost to Healthwatch. Places where people will be able to pick up a printed copy of the survey include:

  • post offices in Townstal (BP garage) and Dittisham
  • Blackawton Community Shop
  • Stoke Fleming Village Hall
  • Townstal Spar
  • Dartmouth Town Council offices
  • Dartmouth Medical Practice
  • Dartmouth Clinic

After the closing date, Healthwatch will separately collate all responses into an independent report to share with the Council and the Trust in early 2022.

Pat Harris, Strategic Lead for Healthwatch in Devon, Plymouth and Torbay, said: “With essential services facing unprecedented challenges, it is really important that we as the consumer champion for health and social care services continue to listen to the community and share feedback with our stakeholders and key decision-makers on what they think would work well or not so well and what may need addressing.

Your feedback will be used to influence how the former hospital site is developed in future and really could make a difference, so please share your views us by filling out the survey, available on all our local Healthwatch websites.”


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