Doctor’s surgery plans are set to be thrown out

Objections: Residents have objected to plans to extend Sandy Lane Surgery
Objections: Residents have objected to plans to extend Sandy Lane Surgery

Plans to extend a medical centre in Leyland town centre look set to be thrown out.

Sandy Lane Surgery on Sandy Lane has applied for permission to create a pharmacy as well as a meeting board room and office space.

But the scheme has been recommended for refusal by planning bosses at South Ribble Borough Council who say it will spark traffic congestion and parking problems in the narrow street.

They are also concerned because the building lies in a conservation area and plans will involve the removal of four trees.

The news comes as a relief to nearby residents who have started a campaign to stop the scheme going ahead.

Paul Davenport, 60, who lives on Victoria Terrace, said: “There’s been a number of us that have lodged objections to extend the surgery. Normally it’s extremely busy and you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere to park.

“Over the years it’s got bigger and more and more people are using cars. There is barely enough room for the staff to park, let alone more patients and residents.

“It is a residential area but crucially it’s a conservation area. The streets around the surgery such as Victoria Terrace, Balcarres Road and Sandy Lane itself are little flagships for the town and it’s crucial they should be kept like that.

“We’re not objecting to having a surgery, we just want it in keeping with the rest of the area.”

Coun Caleb Tomlinson, who represents the Leyland Central ward, said: “It’s absolutely horrendous for traffic around there in the morning and after the schools finish. That surgery has 15,000 patients. People double park all over the place and it’s impossible to get any space. At the top of the road it bottle necks and you can barely get six people stood side by side across it.

“If you get someone in a four-wheel drive and then you get an ambulance coming along, you’ve got no chance.”

Officers have recommended that members of the council’s planning committee refuse the plans when they meet on January 12.

Coun Tomlinson said: “Another big problem is that the people living on Victoria Terrace used to have a beautiful view. That’s now gone.

“In 20 years, that surgery has been extended five times and now they want to go upwards.”

The plans have been welcomed by some residents however, who say the extension will provide a valuable service for the town.

Edna Lydiate, who lives on Broad Street, said: “I think it’s a great idea for the surgery to have their own dispensary for patients rather than having to visit a chemist after their appointment.

“This would be ideal for older patients. I can’t see it making any difference to the parking situation the residents have on Sandy Lane.”

GP and surgery partner, Dr Brian Rambihar, said previously: “We feel that having a pharmacist on the site will improve our clinical performance and enable us to provide a better service for our patients.”