Video: Emotional address from campaigner kick-starts Grantham protest rally

First to take to the microphone at the protest rally on Saturday was campaigner Councillor Charmaine Morgan.

After thanking the crowd for their support, she spoke passionately about the need to protect Grantham’s emergency services.

Coun Charmaine Morgan speaks at the protest rally

Coun Charmaine Morgan speaks at the protest rally

She said: “The reason we are here today is not for a good rally, it’s because we are genuinely concerned that lives are at risk.

“We are fighting for the lives of the people in our community and we will not stand by quietly while this government and this trust [United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust] undermine our NHS and our A&E services.”

The rally followed a protest march through Grantham, against the closure forced on Grantham Hospital’s A&E unit by ULHT. The trust closed the unit between 6.30pm and 9am daily on August 17 because of a shortage of staff at the A&Es in Boston and Lincoln.

It claims the move is only temporary but has given no assurance that Grantham A&E will reopen on November 17.

Coun Morgan went on to tell the crowd: “Our people are suffering.

“Before ULHT closed our unit, 130 people every day were using its services. Approximately 31 people every night were using the services.

“Where have all those people gone?

“ULHT and our clinical commissioning group are pushing forward NHS England’s strategic plans for emergency care. Their plan centralises our A&E services, leaving small minor injuries units or emergency care centres to look after less critical cases.

“They want to reduce demand on our A&E services but their plans are fundamentally flawed. They don’t provide resuscitatiion so critically injured patients could be turned away or die waiting for an ambulance.”