Campaigners protest against Wrexham doctors’ surgery plan

Reporter:

Phil Robinson

A FOOTBALL club boss has voiced his concerns about a controversial plan to use part of playing field to build a new medical centre.

The proposal, to build a replacement for the over-stretched Borras Park Surgery on a section of the council-owned Spider Park, off Rhosnesni Lane, is due to be considered by Wrexham Council’s executive board on February 15.

It involves putting up the medical centre on the existing car park and replacing the car park and changing rooms.

But the scheme has caused a storm of protest from people who live nearby and use the field.

On Sunday about 100 placard-waving protesters showed their anger at the proposal by staging a demonstration on the field organised by campaign group Save Open Spaces Wales.

Among those backing the protest is Tom Pearce, chairman of Borras Albion, which has six teams regularly using Spider Park.

He said: “I don’t see why they should even be considering building on a playing field as we have lost so many of them.

“I reckon it’s about nine soccer pitches and a cricket field so far and, given that this area has a population of 13,000, that means there are not enough fields as it is. I am also concerned about the uncertainty that will be created by Spider Park going into private rather than council ownership.”

He added: “If this scheme goes ahead the existing pitches will have to be realigned and this will mean they are unplayable for about a year while they are reseeded.”

Acton Tenants and Residents Association (ATRA) said in a statement: “We accept that the surgery needs to improve its facilities and agree that the practice is an
asset to the community.

“Our argument was and still remains with Wrexham Council over the underhanded way in which it has dealt with this matter.

“An application to protect the whole of the Spider Park playing field on Rhosnesni Lane, Acton, was submitted some time ago but council officers took it upon themselves to exclude a portion of the field from this protection.

“It then decided to take another chunk of the field, calling it a buffer zone, but did not think it necessary to consult with the community or the Acton Community Council.

“Officers persistently tried to rail road a revised application through the council’s executive board, but fortunately due to the pressure from ATRA and the local community the decision was deferred to allow Acton Community Council time to discuss the issue.

“At a meeting of the community council, the vote was overwhelmingly against the proposed relocation of Borras Park Surgery to the field known locally as the Spider Park.

“We believe our playing fields should be saved and not sold off to private developers at any cost.”

A spokesman for Wrexham Council said the matter would be discussed by the executive board next week.

See full story in the Leader

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