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‘A spectacular failure!’ Worth Parish Council unanimously object to planning proposal for travellers site in Copthorne

In a packed hall last night, Worth Parish Councillors unanimously objected to proposals for a change of use of land at Lower Hollow Copse off Copthorne Road.

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Before the meeting had even begun there were some tensions from residents as to why Mid Sussex District Council were not intending to be present at the meeting.

A Council spokesperson for MSDC said:

“As declared to the clerk of Worth Parish Council in our communication of 1 October it will be best to review Worth Parish Council’s written comments following the meeting this evening and make written comment to the Planning Officer in response. We will also attend the relevant MSDC planning committee meeting where the application will be determined.”

In what was expected to be a heated public meeting, the mood was in-fact calm and resilient with only a handful of the public asking to speak.

Starting with a presentation by the Chairman of the Copthorne Village Association, those in attendance were taken through a whole host of reasons as to why the application was flawed.

It was never going to be a easy journey for the application with over 2,600 objections already publicly posted on change.org.

The Chairman of the CVA pointed out that the application was an example of a ‘spectacular failure’ by the applicants citing numerous flaws including outdated surveys and lack of consultation with both residents and the travelling community.

The mood of the meeting was confirmed when after making his presentation he was awarded a large round of applause from the public, and this was further supported by Councillor Gibson who congratulated him on it.

Following the vote, the Chairman of the CVA said:

“The Copthorne Village Association are pleased Worth Parish Council share our view the latest plans for a Gypsy and Traveller site at Old Hollow are once again unacceptable in planning terms.

It is incredible Mid Sussex District Council have still not undertaken any form of consultation with the Travelling Community whatsoever.

The latest design of a total of thirteen pitches ridiculously includes eight pitches designed for three person occupation which are intended for families with children on the Council waiting list for a pitch.

The CVA believe the current joint application should be withdrawn and resubmitted as one application based on a proper design when up to date reports and technical details are available to support it.”

Whilst those who attended last night and others who have objected strongly to the plans will be happy with the result, the final decision is now back with MSDC and with all eyes now watching with rapturous anticipation tensions are unlikely to cease for quite some time.

Health & Wellbeing

Crawley woman among winning nurses at hospital awards

When the Queen Victoria Hospital asked its patients (past and present) to nominate staff they felt went the extra mile for them during their treatment or appointments, they were overwhelmed with the response.

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Pictured: Breast reconstruction nurse specialists Rebecca and Pam pictured receiving their award from Jo Thomas, Director of Nursing and Quality at Queen Victoria Hospital

The ask was for the hospital’s annual patient experience award, which this year generated over 50 nominations. Among the winners were Pam Golton from East Grinstead and Rebecca Spencer from Crawley – breast reconstruction nurse specialists at the hospital.

The duo received an amazing eight nominations from patients who commended Pam and Rebecca’s support during their reconstruction journey following breast cancer Queen Victoria Hospital is a leading centre for reconstructive breast surgery in the South East, performed either at the same time as a mastectomy or after all treatment has been completed. Pam and Rebecca are on hand to help patients throughout their journey and for however long their treatment takes.

Comments from the nominations included:

“All through my journey they have been amazing, going beyond the care and support I have ever experienced in any other NHS trust. They made me realise that I was normal and treated me as a friend.”

And

“they are kind, caring, good listeners, totally dedicated, professional and give you good honest advice and reassurance if you are worried about anything. Above all they just want to ensure you’re ok. I can honestly say I am so lucky to have been referred to QVH and been given Pam and Rebecca as my breast reconstruction nurse specialists. I really don’t know how I would have coped without them.”

Their win was announced on the night of the annual QVH Staff Awards by a special film one of their patients, Linda, helped create, explaining in her own words why she was driven to nominate the duo. You can watch it now on YouTube:

Commenting on their award Pam said:

“I was really thrilled to find out I had been nominated for an award and it was even more special to find out we had won. Rebecca and I are very much a team and it is lovely to be recognised for what in essence is “just doing our job”, but what a job! Helping ladies navigate what could potentially be the most emotional time of their lives is a privilege and one that we both take very seriously. Having recognition in this way encourages us to continue to strive to improve our practice and continue to make a difference to those we care for”.

Rebecca continued:

“I was so delighted we won the outstanding patient experience award, what a wonderful surprise. It is lovely to hear how we have made a difference to the lives of patients, and humbling to see how much we are appreciated. Patients are the focus of everything we do and it is so lovely to be recognised. To hear that I have helped women through a really difficult time in their lives is really rewarding and it makes me feel very proud.”

Jo Thomas, Director of Nursing and Quality at Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH) explains why the awards are so important:

“We hope that every member of staff makes the experience of our patients a positive one. But we know some of our staff are extra special. Pam and Rebecca are both very deserving winners and we’d like to congratulate them both and all of our staff who were nominated – it’s a real testament to the positive impact our staff make when patients take the time to contact us.”

Queen Victoria Hospital would like to thank everyone who took time to nominate members of staff for the award and would encourage patients to continue passing on their feedback through its Patient Advice and Liaison service (PALS) by email at qvhpals@nhs.net, or its Facebook and Twitter channels.

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