Burnley General Hospital children’s ward protesters take to streets

BURNLEY hospital campaigners fighting to keep the town’s children’s ward will take to the streets next week to protest in what they have dubbed their “last chance” to save it.

Friday, 19th November 2010, 1:29 pm

Protesters will meet outside County Hall in Preston around 10 a.m. on Tuesday ahead of Lancashire County Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee’s meeting at 10-30 a.m., where councillors will review plans to move the Deerplay Ward to the Royal Blackburn Hospital before the end of the year.

A free bus will take protesters from Burnley General Hospital to County Hall and campaigners are urging as many Burnley people as possible to attend.

The bus will pick up from Briercliffe Road, near the shopping centre and Fleetwood Road at 9 a.m. and the school bus stop in Croft Street, by the clock tower, at 9-10 a.m. arriving in Preston at 9-55 a.m. It will return to Burnley at 10-40 a.m.

A Facebook group has also been set up to oppose the proposals.

Mum-of-four Mrs Deanne Kidd, whose son Callum (6) suffers from seizures and was treated on Deerplay as a baby, said: “I think this is our last chance. The meeting is make or break.

“We have been promised that if the committee ask to stop the closure they will. This is our last chance.

“I really hope they will say the Trust are not meeting patients’ needs as they claim.

“It’s not just Callum who needs the ward, there are so many other children affected by this it’s heartbreaking.”

Mrs Kidd, of Kibble Bank, who lives with husband Scott and their three other children Ben (10), Sophie (3) and Charlie (2), said Callum was last taken seriously ill with violent seizures when the family was on holiday in Hastings in August.

“He had 15 seizures over three hours. If we had been at home and he had been taken to Blackburn he might not have survived the journey. It’s made me terribly scared of it happening again.

“Callum’s not been right since then, they are still doing tests on him. When he was a baby the quick-thinking of the staff on Deerplay Ward saved his life. Moving the ward to Blackburn could be detrimental to him.”

The demonstration follows a protest march through Burnley earlier this year.

n The Facebook page can be found by searching for the group Save Our Children’s Ward Burnley Hospital and Mrs Kidd can be contacted on 07736975521.