Plan for Doncaster ambulance hub withdrawn

Ms Haigh said the public and 'brilliant and dedicated' paramedics are being let down by the Government
Ms Haigh said the public and 'brilliant and dedicated' paramedics are being let down by the Government

Plans for a new Doncaster ambulance hub at Lakeside have been withdrawn at the eleventh hour.

Doncaster Council’s planning committee was due to make a decision on the application, which detailed plans submitted by the Yorkshire Ambulance Service to build a new ambulance station next to the Keepmoat Stadium, on Tuesday.

But the application was withdrawn by the YAS, with no explanation for the decision.

The YAS has not confirmed whether it still hopes to build a new ambulance station in the town.

Commenting on the withdrawal of the application, a YAS spokesman said: “As part of its modernisation programme, Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust is reviewing its buildings and estate.

“A number of potential sites are currently being assessed in South Yorkshire, but no decisions have been made.”

The YAS declined to comment when asked whether the decision to shelve the plans for an ambulance station in Doncaster were done in order to cut costs, or if the ‘modernisation programme’ would result in fewer ambulances and resources for the Doncaster area.

In documents submitted to the service’s bosses in November, the YAS stated that the Hub and Spoke planned land acquisition had been delayed due to ‘scheme specifics.’

The report also outlines how the trust has a ‘savings target’ of £9.059million that must be slashed from its budget by April this year.

At the time of the report’s publication, 87 per cent of its savings target had been achieved through what it describes as ‘recurrent’ and ‘reserve’ schemes.

Pensioner Dennis Shaw, who represents patients in Doncaster as a Yorkshire Ambulance Service Forum member, said he was concerned.

He said: “The service is very under-funded, and despite the best efforts of the people who work for it, they can’t change this.”