SOS Grantham Hospital would like to say a huge thank you to everyone in our community who supported our Grantham Hospital A&E Protest March on 29 October and The Goose Fun Day fundraiser on 30 October.
It is estimated that at least 4,000 people attended the march with some figures up to 6,000 quoted as people joined in.
A particular thanks must go to our local police officers who, after a series of joint planning meetings with ourselves, LCC Highways and site visits, carried out their duties alongside our volunteer marshalls, keeping the road clear for us all to use effectively and amicably.
Thanks too to the wonderful choir accompanying us. Guest speakers from across our county attended including ex-miner Geoff Poulter from Skegness Hospital Watch, Gary Freeman from Unison East Midlands based in Nottingham, Jody Clark and Melissa from Fighting4 Grantham Hospital, local Cllr Ray Wootten, our mayoress Cllr Linda Wootten and Cllr Marianne Overton from Navenby.
A special thanks goes to Robert Jenrick MP for Newark and Balderton who kindly stepped in for Nick Boles MP, to whom we send wishes for a full and speedy recovery. I was delighted to be able to acknowledge the work of our top petitioner Jayne Dawson from Ancaster who has become a familiar sight to visitors to the Sir Isaac Newton Centre.
Jayne has collected over 10,400 signatures herself.
Tom Simmonds provided the PA system and Print Bureau donated banners, posters and thousands of leaflets distributed by volunteers from across the community organised by Fighting4Grantham Hospital.
Our event was watched on-line from Australia to New York. SKDC helped with our contingency plans.
During the rally I asked people to let us know if you have been affected by the night time closure of Grantham Hospital A&E.
Thanks to those who have contacted me so far. If you have a recent experience, or have been helped by Grantham A&E when critically ill, please contact me on 07398 156296 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ULHT have announced plans to keep our unit closed through Christmas and winter at night until February. This is unacceptable. We are challenging why the decision was made to close our A&E unit at night and are also fighting to get it re-opened - permanently.
It is critical to lobby all parties that may influence the situation.
Our Wednesday night vigils will continue and plans are being made to take the SOS Grantham Hospital petition, now more than 40,000 UK signatures, to Downing Street.
South Kesteven District & Lincolnshire County Councillor