Wednesday 31 July 2013

Save Trafford General Hospital!

On 5th July I was thrilled and felt extremely privileged to attend the NHS' 65th birthday celebration at Trafford (née Park) General Hospital, which is often referred to as the birth-place of our wonderful National Health Service as it was the very first hospital to join.

On arrival the strains of New Orleans' jazz vibrated up and down the parade of shops and through the milling crowd. Below is a photo of the Mark Rodger Manchester Jazz band playing below and in front of the hospital's signage.

I happily signed the birthday card; although with my arthritis, I had difficulty gripping even the oversized marker-pen as can be seen in the photo below.

I made new pals in an amiable couple Jenny & Andrew, himself a wheelie, and who both do volunteer work for WoWpetition. In the photo below, Jenny proudly displays her placard which reads:

I [heart icon]

There was a point at which the several hundred folk there assembled were asked to hold hands and form a human chain in a public demonstration of our admiration of our NHS. Alas, as I was holding hands, I could not take a photo of the action!

After the mark of respect and solidarity, we were manœuvred into positions for a march of protest past the front of the hospital and towards a local park. Various unions as well as the public were involved, including Unite and in the photo below, members of Unison holding up a very large banner. I realise the photo has a slightly odd perspective; but remember, I am in a wheelchair!

Once in the park there was a festival atmosphere with stalls, a stage from whence bands played and also from which various speeches were delivered.

I was also there in my capacity as a volunteer for and on behalf of WoWpetition. The photo below is of our team of helpers and supporters, including inter alia myself on the left followed by Reverend Paul, Jenny and Andrew.

So why am I just now telling you of an event that occurred almost a month ago? Well, unfortunately our protest fell on deaf ears and shortly afterwards Jeremy Hunt ruled that Trafford General Hospital could be downgraded.

However, not to be beaten the Save Trafford General campaign fights on. The flier at the top of this blog-post reads:

Public Meeting

 6pm, Wednesday 31st July

        Town Hall, Talbot Road, Stretford, Manchester M32 0TH

TRAFFORD Council are holding an extraordinary meeting to decide whether to apply for a Judicial Review of the Health Secretary’s decision to close A&E and other services at Trafford General Hospital.
The public are invited to give their views – you can register to speak by 5.00 pm on July 30. Email

Stand up and speak up
for your local hospital -
and your local NHS!

My comment would be: if you don't fight for it, you lose it! I hope some of you may be able to attend.

1 comment:

  1. Trafford Council to seek High Court action against Jeremy Hunt over A&E closure decision

    TRAFFORD Council is to seek a Judicial Review of Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s decision to close A&E and other vital services at Trafford General Hospital.
    Councillors voted unanimously to take the first step to putting Mr Hunt in the dock at the High Court, after hearing local people demand action to save Trafford General.
    This was the Labour resolution which was unanimously supported by the entire council:
    “Council condemns the decision made by the Conservative Government Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt in downgrading A&E and other services at Trafford General.
    This Conservative Government decision comes at a time when Manchester hospital A&Es are stretched to the limit and are not able to reach their prescribed waiting times.
    To close Trafford General A&E will result in increasing those pressures and waiting times in those hospitals which will be expected to take in the 37,000 a year Trafford Hospital A&E patients.
    In light of the deficiencies in the Secretary of States decision, Council instructs the Director of Legal and Democratic Services to seek Counsel’s advice with a view to appealing the decision.”