PEOPLE are paying the price for ‘tortuous’ delays to a long-awaited multi-million pound health centre project, a councillor has said.
Residents in Buckley have endured a “shambolic” 12-year process to secure the new £6.8m facility, Buckley councillor Dennis Hutchinson said.
Work is still yet to begin on the health centre build, despite the project finally getting the go-ahead in February.
The scheme was then beset by wranglings between the health board and developers.
But after they were resolved over the summer, work was meant to begin on the site near Elfed High School in September.
Now councillors say GP surgeries in the town are stalling the work further, claiming they are holding out for a better deal from a private finance initiative with the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board over use of the health centre.
A new start date has now been set for October 14.
But Buckley councillor Dennis Hutchinson said: “The whole process has been a complete shambles for the last ten years.
“People in the community are suffering as they are missing out on a badly-needed new health centre.
“Practices want the best possible deal – and I can understand where they’re coming from to an extent. But it’s very frustrating for everyone when you are waiting 12 years for something to happen.”
Ysgol Belmont has already been demolished to make way for the health centre, which will be positioned on the junction of Liverpool Road and Alltami Road, near Elfed High School.
The new building will replace the existing health centre on Padeswood Road and will house two general practices with 12 consulting rooms, as well as ancillary support rooms.
Fellow Buckley town councillor Ron Hampson has previously described the push for the health centre as “a tortuous process”.
He said: “There’s still a bit of trouble with the practices and we are getting fed up with all the messing about that has taken place throughout the whole thing.
“Hopefully we will get there in the end and people will finally get the health centre they deserve.”
The health centre will also house seven consulting rooms ensuring provision for health board care services, including district nurses and midwives.
Parking for more than 100 vehicles will be available while proposals for dental facilities and a pharmacy have also been made. Work on the facility, once it gets underway, will take about a year to complete.