'˜Huge battle' awaits to cure town's need for a chemist

Campaigners are hoping 3,000 signatures are the shot in arm needed to bring a pharmacy back to Arundel.

Colin Stepney and June Barker leading the charge at the campaign's market stall
Colin Stepney and June Barker leading the charge at the campaign's market stall

Local resident Colin Stepney said support has been fantastic but a ‘huge battle’ still remains before a chemist can return.

“Our campaign would not have been as successful without the tremendous support we have received from so many businesses in the town.

“Our presence at the farmers market each month has given us a fantastic platform from which to tell people about what we are trying to achieve.”

The town centre has been without a pharmacy since Lloyds Pharmacy left several years ago and moved to a new building at the doctors’ surgery in Canada Road.

Colin, 72, added: “Local residents feel completely embarrassed when stopped by a visitor to the town who needs a chemist.

“The Lloyds Pharmacy isn’t particularly accessible on foot.

“Elderly people who no longer drive or have mobility issues are completely reliant on neighbours or friends to help them.”

But despite a huge wave of support for the pharmacy campaign, Colin knows the fight is not over.

Unlike a hardware store or supermarket, Boots or another company cannot simply decide to open a pharmacy in Arundel.

The final decision, after a long consultation process, is made by NHS England.

After months of rallying support and signatures the consultation has arrived and Colin and others are asking residents for one final push.

Colin added: “This is the last opportunity for us to make our case.

“We hope everyone who has supported our campaign will also take part in this Survey, and explain in their own words the need an in-town’ pharmacy.

“We have a huge battle ahead, but we are determined to make our voice heard.”