December 19 2014 Latest news:
Adam Gretton, Health correspondent
Monday, January 6, 2014
The chief executive of a charity that cares for seriously-ill children and young people said they had so far received “overwhelming” support for plans for a new hospice in Norfolk.
Hundreds of people descended on Poringland Community Centre today to view East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) proposals for a new hospice in Framingham Earl, near Norwich.
Graham Butland, chief executive, said the charity had received “huge support” for the scheme, which would cost around £10m, and would replace their hospice in Quidenham, near Attleborough, if a planning application and fundraising appeal was successful.
Plans for a five-acre field on the corner of Pigot Lane and Long Road, Framingham Earl, were on display today and officials from EACH hope to submit a planning application to South Norfolk Council by the end of the month.
Mr Butland said: “We have had huge support. Some support the hospice movement and others would rather have a children’s hospice on that site than 150 houses. We have had overwhelming support and people really appreciate that we are doing it this way.”
“Very few people, thankfully, know what a children’s hospice is or have any link with a children’s hospice. There are not going to be ambulances in and out all of the time. Peace and tranquillity is what we are trying to provide. We want to be good neighbours because the community provides 75pc of our funding and we do not want to upset our neighbours.”
“From what we have heard so far, we do not need to change the plans. People will reflect on the plans and when a formal notice is made public, it is open for anyone to make comments either for or against. If some are anti, we are not adverse to looking at how we can make things as acceptable as possible.”
The proposals aim to improve the quality of care EACH delivers to Norfolk’s life-threatened children, young people and their families and cope with increased demand. The charity has no scope to expand at its listed buildings at Quidenham.
Jane Rich, of Alpington, who attended today’s consultation, praised EACH’s plans.
“When I heard about the plans, I said ‘wow’. They provide wonderful end-of-life care,” she said.
However, a resident of Long Road, Framingham Earl, who declined to be named, said he had concerns about the noise and traffic that would be generated by the proposed new development.
“I am worried about traffic and I’m not sure the infrastructure can take it,” he said.