New GP surgery to act as ‘full stop’ for new homes

A NEW GP surgery planned for Herstmonceux would ‘terminate’ further development along the south side of Hailsham Road, according to a planning report.

Design revisions have been submitted to Wealden District Council to complement the existing planning consent for the development proposed by the local GP, Dr John Simmons.

Architect Dil Green’s report stated the plan to build a splendid two storey building which would better serve the health needs of villagers. The building would replace the existing smaller surgery, constructed in the 1980s, which has been seen as no longer fit-for-purpose during the past decade.

Dil Green said: “The proposal is for a new, highly sustainable building providing a wide range of primary healthcare services.”

The surgery would be outside the allowed village boundary but there was a ‘powerful need’ for a new surgery, said the design report. It added the building would be a ‘full stop’ to more develoment rather than attracting new homes nearby.

Dr John Simmons has overseen the plans, and Dil Green said: “It is his determination to work in a building which is of the highest standard, in terms both of delivering primary healthcare and of environmental sustainability, that has led him to take on the responsibility and risk of acting as developer for the project.

“His involvement, rather than the more typical arrangement of bringing in an outside developer to provide the surgery, is an important guarantor of long-term commitment to the quality and local relevance of the project.”

Changes proposed in the revised plan are: raising the position of the building in the site by 750mm; changes to external paths and road layouts, and moving a pedestrian entrance; and lowering parking roadway levels to reduce retaining construction near the Ghyll woodland protection zone.

It is also planned for natural ventilation installation; increased window sizes and changes to external window types; biomass heating; design changes in the reception; changes to building materials; directing foul waste to an on-site septic tank (not public sewer); and an increase in internal floor area from 435sqm to 458sqm.