We have been informed this week that our Appeal to the Scottish Government to take over the Infirmary has been dismissed and our Community Asset Transfer has been refused. The dismissal and refusal were based on three issues raised by the Reporter in his report to Scottish Ministers:-
- whether a sufficient level of community benefit will be derived from the community transfer;
- whether there is sufficient evidence provided in relation to the sustainability and ongoing viability of the appellants proposals concerning funding (along with a second component of that issue concerning commitments to maintenance, repair or improvement works);
- and whether best value requirements concerning the value of the property are met (or could be protected) in relation to the proposal.
In his report the Reporter stated that we had addressed issues 1 and 3 but the more difficult issue is the sustainability and viability of the project. The simple problem is, with the site we can get funding, without the site no funders can guarantee funding even when they are very supportive of the project. Catch 22! Sadly, NHS Tayside were not prepared to consider legal conditions in the transfer of the site to BHG which would cover any funding issues.
If you wish to read the full report provided to Scottish Ministers by the Reporter it will be made publicly available on the Scottish Government’s Community Empowerment website on the 18th January.
We are extremely disappointed with this decision and now have to give careful thought to the way forward for Brechin Healthcare Group. The Jenner Centre will continue for the present but as we have a temporary lease on the premises we need to consider its future.
The Steering Group has a Zoom meeting this evening (Thursday) to consider the way forward and we will let you know as soon as possible our decision.
Thank you very much to all for all your support over the past 6 years.