From derelict building to GP supercentre?
Plans have been revealed to turn the derelict Hospital on Putney Common into a combined mega practice, pharmacy and nursing centre by 2006.
Currently the 8000 sq m site is lying empty, boarded up and a eyesore on Putney Common. Wandsworth Primary Care Trust (PCT), which owns the site, said it will present an outline business case for the primary care centre to its board and the board of the South West London Strategic Health Authority in April 2004 and a fully costed business case that November.
A spokesperson has confirmed that the centre would house eight GPs from the existing practices in Putney; Putneymead Medical Centre,on the Upper Richmond Road, the Balmuir Surgery,off the Upper Richmond Rd, and the Aarons Practice, in Disraeli Road. In addition the plans would allow for a a dispensing pharmacy and a base for community nurses to operate in Putney and Roehampton.
Other options still being looked at include physiotherapists, dentists, occupational therapists and even social services, in conjunction with Queen Mary’s Hospital, Roehampton.
There is local concern that the building of a centralised "GP centre" would harm the local businesses including pharmacists found in the areas that the GPs are currently based, as there could be less "passing trade" from the GP's patients.
Many see the timetable as being hopelessly optimistic, as the PCT would need to apply for planning permission from Wandsworth Council within the next three months to build the centre and residential housing to generate capital for the project.
As yet the PCT has not had any preliminary discussions with the Planning Department nor are we aware of any architect being employed for the scheme. As yet there is no indication of how much private residential housing would be incorporated into the project - this would generate much of the funding for the project. Nor has there been discussion with the Wimbledon and Putney Commons Conservators over granting better road access.
In his diary last week Cllr Lister welcomes development of the site but was concerned that "awfully long way to go before a realistic proposal can be prepared."
Tony Colman MP for Putney commented in his most recent diary entry that he too was pleased that the site would at last be developed but that he wants "the remainder of the site proposed for housing to be affordable/rented housing for Wandsworth's key workers.
12th September 2003
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Comment from Tony Colman MP