HUNDREDS of NHS campaigners ringed a West Yorkshire hospital holding hands on Saturday in protest against its proposed closure, writes Peter Lazenby.
Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust wants to shut the 400-bed Huddersfield Royal Infirmary (HRI), including its A&E unit, and transfer most of its functions to neighbouring Halifax.
The trust says the closure and transfer of services is a temporary measure, but campaigners fear the move will lead to “closure by stealth.”
Hands Off HRI campaigners have kept up a 20-month campaign against the plans and are now seeking a judicial review.
Campaigner June Holmes told the Star that 500 people had turned up from as far away as Chatsworth, Chorley and Lincolnshire.
“The trust says that the ward closures are ‘part of the routine activity’ of the hospital because of a shortage of staff over the winter months. They say that this is a temporary measure.
“We have got a close eye on them and they will not get anything past this campaign and our solicitors Irwin Mitchell.”