On the 12th December people will take to the streets of Dorchester en masse for the second time this year to defend paediatric and maternity services at Dorset County Hospital. This is part of the continuing resistance to long-term plans to degrade health facilities in West Dorset, privatise, sub-contract and/or transfer them Eastward to the conurbation of Bournemouth/Poole. We hear sympathetic noises from politicians but as we all know they speak with forked tongues.
If you take a look at the county of Dorset, you can see it is roughly diamond-shaped, and Dorchester is bang in the centre; where else would you put the county hospital? Public transport in West Dorset is sparse to pitiful, and many regular users of children’s services struggle to get to Dorchester, let alone Poole – an hour away by car (or ambulance) from most communities. Imagine caring for a chronically ill or disabled child in the Winterbourne valley, where there are only two buses a day. This is simply a matter of life and death.
If you are able to get to Dorchester on the day, please support us, we need everybody out on the streets, bring your banners, flags, etc, for a family friendly, carnival atmosphere!