news

Best foot forward for hospital campaigners

Supporters of HandsOffHRI will trek 15 miles from Dewsbury Hospital to Marsden to highlight their campaign

Huddersfield Royal Infirmary(Image: Huddersfield Examiner)

Opponents of plans for a major shake-up of hospital services in Kirklees are set to take part in a 15-mile trek as part of their campaign.

Protesters from HandsOffHRI will walk and run from Dewsbury Hospital to Marsden on Saturday (August 19) – joined on parts of the route by two local MPs.

Dewsbury Labour MP Paula Sheriff will join campaigners at 9.30am at the sponsored walk start line at Dewsbury Hospital for the first stretch of the walk while party colleague Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman will join the fundraisers at 11.30am for the canalside stretch from Leeds Road to Kirklees College at Chapel Hill.

Co-organiser Mike Forster said: “The day-long sponsored walk will see the #HandsOffHRI campaigners pass through many Kirklees districts where local residents would be adversely affected – should the unpopular proposals to downband Huddersfield’s only remaining NHS hospital go ahead – as they walk along the local Colne Valley cycle path and canal.”

Members of Huddersfield running clubs, Acre Street Runners based in Lindley and Stadium Runners based at the John Smith’s Stadium , will be invited to run either the seven-mile section from Dewsbury to Kirklees College or the eight-mile section from the college to Marsden. Some of the runners will tackle the whole 15 miles.

At Marsden, members of Colne Valley Hand Of HRI group will provide a buffet for the tired walkers.

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust plans to replace the infirmary – which has more than 400 beds – with a 64-bed “planned care” facility and transfer capacity to Calderdale Royal Hospital in Halifax, which will be expanded to have 676 beds. Health bosses have approved the Full Business Case (FBC) for change, which is now being submitted to regulator NHS Improvement for scrutiny.

Anyone wishing to support the walk or join in with the event can email info.handsoffhri@gmail.com or visit handsoffhri.org/sponsored-walk on Facebook. Sponsor forms can be downloaded from handsoffhri.org/sponsored-walk-form

View full mobile page