CONTROVERSIAL plans for two new pharmacies at Wick have been turned down by an NHS committee.
Two separate proposals, one based within the new Enterprise Hub next to the Morrisons supermarket, off Courtwick Lane, and a second at the nearby Martello Enterprise Centre, in Hawthorn Road, have been refused licences by the pharmacy committee for Surrey and Sussex.
The applications, made earlier this year, prompted fears that if one or both were successful, they would have an adverse impact on the existing Glyn Norris Pharmacy at Wick Parade, and on other shops in the neighbourhood centre, by drawing trade away.
Littlehampton Town Council lodged a strong objection against the rival pharmacy bids, with mayor Joyce Bowyer fearing they could sound the death knell for the shops in Wick Parade.
Announcing its decision to refuse the applications, by Medicx Pharmacy Ltd at the Martello Enterprise Centre and by Lloyds Pharmacy Ltd at the Enterprise Hub, the pharmacy committee said: “The committee felt that there was already a good range of pharmaceutical services in Littlehampton, including two 100-hour pharmacies on the ring road around the town and a pharmacy approximately 600m from the proposed site and, based on that, the applications would not secure better access to pharmaceutical services.”
It added that there was no indication of any shortfall of such services in the area.
Arun Medical Group, with GP surgeries at East Street, Littlehampton and in East Preston, wants to relocate to the Enterprise Hub and plans have been submitted to Arun District Council.
Mike Northeast, town and Arun district councillor for Ham ward, which includes Wick Parade, welcomed the committee’s decision. “I’m pleased,” he said. “It seems that at last the NHS in this area is starting to listen to us in Littlehampton and provide us with the services that are needed, rather than what they think we need.
“The pharmacy at Wick parade is very much one of the anchor tenants and having another pharmacy up the road could have had a detrimental effect not only on that business but on the rest of the parade.
A spokesman at the head office of Glyn Norris declined to comment while there was still a possibility of appeals against the committee’s decision.