A VILLAGE in west Cornwall could be left without a doctor's surgery after the owners of the building announced plans to sell up. 

Local Cornwall Councillor, Sue James, started getting emails, telephone calls and social media messages after residents in Pendeen saw their local GP surgery up for sale through Lodge and Thomas, listed as a “Former GP Surgery” with a price tag of £265,000.

It is still a well used sub branch surgery and has around 700 patients who were transferred to the parent surgery at Morrab Road Penzance, when the original parent surgery at Penalverne closed.

Councillor James has since been talking to a GP at Morrab Road Surgery, the Director of Primary Care at Kernow Clinical Commissioning and local patients to understand the situation and its impact on the community, if this goes ahead.

The partners at Morrab Surgery have issued a public statement:

“The partners at Morrab Surgery wish to make clear that the sale of the building is solely a decision made by the owners of the building, Dr Daniel Kingston and Dr Caroline Fullick.

"Morrab Surgery rents the building from the owners and has no desire, or plans to move from the current location.

"However, as it is now clearly the aim of the owners to sell the building, we now need to find suitable alternative accommodation within the village. If anyone knows of accommodation that they feel might be suitable please let us know.”

With the return bus fare to Penzance being £5.40, many of the patients that do not drive have told Cllr James that they would struggle physically to get to Penzance by public transport or that they would struggle with the fares.

The added concerns are that the village has a purpose built surgery, due to the generosity of a local family donating the land 30 years ago so villagers struggle to understand why the community should need to look for alternative premises.

Cllr Jame said: “I have placed the Pendeen Surgery on the agenda of the next St Just Town Council meeting for 11 February in order to ask them to act on behalf of the community.

"I will be asking them to agree to apply to Cornwall Council, under the Localism Act, to register the Doctors Surgery as an Asset of Community Value. If this application is accepted it would halt the sale for 6 months giving the community a chance to work with Morrab Surgery to bid to buy Pendeen surgery.”

To support getting the surgery registered as an Asset of Community Value, Cllr James is asking locals to let her or St Just Town Council know what the surgery means to them and whether they would pledge money to help buy the building, if that becomes the only way forward.

She adds on her website: “It would help if patients wrote to me to explain how the loss of the surgery would affect them. Anyone able to pledge money towards buying the building (whether £5 or £500) that would help show that the community is serious about bidding for the building. Please do not send money, just a pledge.”

Councillor James was able to confirm that she has had an email exchange with Dr Fullick, one of the owners of the building now up for sale and gains the impression that communication might have broken down between her and the partners at Morrab Surgery.

Dr Fullick has made it clear she would prefer the current arrangements to continue, although she has consented to the sale of the building.