The Emsworth Victoria Cottage Hospital (EVCH) is registered with Havant Borough Council as an Asset of Community Value under the Localism Act 2011.
Despite this, NHS Property Services Ltd has placed EVCH on the market for sale. They have done this without providing any notice and without engaging with any community groups.
We have started this campaign to encourage NHS Property Services Ltd to withdraw the notification they have given to Havant Borough Council of their intention to sell the site, and consult with us, the Emsworth Community Land Trust.
We are a steering group of local volunteers, working closely with other interested groups in the Community, including representatives from the Emsworth Forum, Friends of Emsworth Community Health, Emsworth Business Association, Emsworth Community Centre and Emsworth Residents Association.
The community of Emsworth have set out their vision for the area in the draft Neighbourhood Plan (2018) and in particular wish to see:
- Community based health facilities and services that support healthy lifestyles
- More affordable housing options offering a mix of housing including smaller units for young or more elderly residents
- Specialist accomodation to assist people in being independent
- Development of the Emsworth Victoria Cottage Hospital site
Now it is clear that the NHS Property Services Ltd is intent on selling this site, it is our wish to purchase the site for the community to realise this vision for our town. There are many successful examples throughout the UK where communities have taken the lead on new affordable housing and community health schemes, and we strongly believe Emsworth has a chance of meeting these ambitions. The Cottage Hospital Site is an important place to start.
We have the full support of Hampshire Community Housing Partnership and Havant Borough Council to take these ideas forward. The community of Emsworth have made their vision clear, and should the site be sold to another developer it is highly unlikely that this vision will ever be realised.
We are Crowdfunding to raise money to help us hire expert legal advice who can help us prevent the sale of the site before the community have had the opportunity to purchase it. In addition, the funds will help us with marketing and PR to raise awareness of our campaign. Any additional funds raised that are surplus will go towards the Emsworth Community Land Trust.