“This is a battle we can win”.
That was the message from Colne Valley MP Jason McCartney ahead of the huge protest rally in Huddersfield on Saturday by campaigners fighting to save A & E services in the Royal Infirmary.
He will tell thousands of protestors to make their voices heard in the public consultation before health chiefs decide on the future set-up of services between Huddersfield and Calderdale.
Mr McCartney is one of the speakers who will be addressing protestors in St George’s Square on Saturday lunchtime after they have marched around the town centre.
He said: “My message is simple: we can win this fight.
“We need to be telling the doctors on the Clinical Commissioning Groups who will make the decisions that we and they should be concerned about ambulance transfers, about travel times, about case studies of patients.
“All this is compelling evidence which should mean that this appalling idea to move A & E services should be thrown out.
“I want all the people who have signed petitions and all those who turn out on Saturday to make sure they make their views known to the doctors in the public consultation.
“There are more than 60,000 people who have signed the petition and we can make this Huddersfield’s biggest ever public consultation.
“We want everyone to say to the doctors that this plan is wrong.
“We should also be asking why we have not been consulted on possible alternatives, or why both Huddersfield and Halifax cannot retain their own full A & E unit. Let us all have a look at the options”.
Click the map below and zoom in to see the route - you can save the map to your phone
Mr McCartney has also taken the Save A & E campaign to the corridors of power at Westminster - helped by young people from Slaithwaite and Holmfirth.
Take a look at the HandsoffHRI palm campaign video below
A group of youngsters from The Basement project in Slaithwaite and Phoenix Youth club in Holmfirth toured Westminster and had their photos taken both with Mr McCartney and with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn - and with save A & E placards.
Mr McCartney said: “I have done a lot of work with the young people and it was great to show them round Westminster.
“They were keen to promote the campaign”.