07511 217 984
Following the so-called ’consultation’ meeting at St Mary’s church, Banbury, on Thursday 26th January, I wrote a draft of the following for the ‘Save Our Horton’ Facebook Group, which now numbers over 19,000 members. I believe your readers in the wider ‘Banburyshire’ community may like to know what happened at the meeting.
I returned from the Horton meeting at St Mary’s feeling totally shell-shocked. I’ve always been told that I have a bit of a cynical streak, but tonight the only thing I’m actually happy about is that I spent the evening in a packed church with around 500 other, similarly minded ‘cynics’, who dare-to-care deeply, passionately, about their local General Hospital and were über cynical about the misguided and frankly dangerous plans being proposed for the Acute Services at the Horton Hospital.
The questions from the floor were, for the most part, well presented, incisive, cutting and refreshingly direct. The corresponding answers from the Trust were without fail, contrived, evasive, unbelievable, disingenuous and in some cases, jaw-droppingly crass.
The pre-admin organisation didn’t give me much hope of competence as emails requesting a place were ignored for many, including myself. Calls to book a place were met with answer phone messages and everyone on the Trust side appeared to be ‘Out-of-Office’ until the end of January. No agenda appeared until 7 hours before the meeting and full details of the Trust attendees and the all important ’Chair’, only appeared six hours before the meeting after much chasing by myself. If these tactics were an attempt to try to keep people away, they failed, and how they failed! They also demonstrated the utter unprofessionalism and contempt being demonstrated by the Trust during this exercise.
The Chair, Gavin Grey was, according to a number of online sources, an ex BBC strike-breaker, one of those to whom the ’Beeb’ turns when their Newsreaders are on strike. In short, it didn’t bode well for his integrity. The Chair facilitated the Trust getting their message over and successfully stifled the assembled masses from challenging the wildly inaccurate, spurious and frequent down-right lies which came tumbling forth from the stage. Here, the old adage of ‘The one who controls the microphone, controls the meeting’ applies rather well.
The chairing of the meeting was a highly partisan affair. The questions were poorly handled in a very arbitrary way, ‘Please keep them short’ seemed to be his mantra and ‘We’re running out of time’. Where obvious lies were told, no opportunity to challenge them, then and there, was permitted. It was like a Donald Trump news conference where they tried to silence responses to outrageous lies. Absolutely shameful. I’d be interested to learn how much the Trust paid Mr Grey (obviously from the public purse) for his dubious services that evening?
The Trust tried to say that the proposed changes were purely for clinical reasons. They failed to provide any compelling arguments to support their case. I utterly refute and reject their transparent lies. Budget cuts as part of the Government STPs (Sustainability Transformation Plans) are forcing a massive budget cut across the entire NHS, with this Trust being directed by NHS England to cut a reported £200 million from their budget by 2020. This is what is driving the stripping of all manner of acute services from the Horton Hospital, NOT clinical need or efficiency.
Local MP Victoria Prentis as well as her predecessor Tony Baldry were in the audience, both taking the opportunity to speak out. Victoria Prentis went on record saying, that if it’s a matter of money to keep the Horton Acute Services, then she would lobby the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt for more funding. The fact is Ms Prentis, Government STPs are what is causing this reduction and the closure of perfectly good, efficient and capable hospitals all over the country, all in the name of centralising and efficiency.
It is widely accepted that the standard technique for privatisation is to defund, make sure things don’t work properly, try to blame someone else (immigrants are usually a safe target), make people angry and then hand the services over to private healthcare providers, to make things better. In short, the abolition of the NHS via the backdoor. We will not lie down and meekly accept this fate.
For me, one of the truly damning statements from the floor during the evening was from Stratford District Councillor Chris Kettle who took the Trust to task on the fact that they, the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group had singularly failed to respond to various invitations from the Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group (their sister body) to attend meetings to discuss implications of the proposed changes to neighbouring CCGs. This provided a glimpse into the World of the shockingly unprofessional Oxfordshire CCG. The mealy-mouthed response from Mr Brennan was that members of the team had spoken to Warwickshire CCG, finally this week. I hope these medical professionals on stage are better at their clinical roles, because they are utterly hopeless at the ones they presently occupy. On present form, I’d frankly doubt their ability to cut my toe nails safely.
And then, as if to seal the evening and remind us of their incompetence, the Trust managed to not bring along sufficient copies of the Consultation document about which they had been evangelising all evening. Unbelievable! Alas, I couldn’t even start reading the x hundred pages of glossy ‘turgidity’.
The great Winston Churchill once wrote of the then Soviet Union, ‘It is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma’. Well tonight we had ‘Incompetence, heaped upon ineptitude, piled upon utter farce’.
Finally, I would implore all your readers to try to attend one of these consultation meetings which are taking place around the region in the coming weeks, but also to write to your local MP clearly stating that the cutting of Acute Services at Banbury Horton Hospital is not acceptable and won’t be tolerated.
Banbury – Victoria Prentis MP email
South Northants – Andrea Leadsom MP email
Dare to care and let’s Save Our Horton.
Aston le Walls.
Like this? Share it
“Perfect, excellent service. Arrived within one hour as promised on Good Friday, polite, very tidy job, very reasonably priced. Would highly recommend. Fantastic!!” Source: Google
Speak with Chris Davies on 01295 273245 or 07901 774221.
Carpets. Upholstery. Soft furnishings. And crime scene cleaning specialists.
For quality cleaning of carpets, upholstery, rugs and curtains – Trauma and Crime scene cleaning, try Pro-Clean.
Simply call, email or visit the Pro-Clean website for more information
Tel: 01295 701391 or 07958 966653
Cookerburra North Oxfordshire is a specialist oven cleaning service offering amazing results at affordable prices.
Buy With Confidence – Trading Standards Approved
Telephone: 01295 277789
….is Banbury’s premier postural and lifestyle clinic, helping you to achieve your optimal health.
The Chiropractors at Restore Chiropractic have over 20 years of combined clinical expertise.
With a wealth of over 20 years experience within the gardening industry to ensure your garden is well cared for and looks beautiful.
Simply Contact us to arrange your FREE Consultation.
Tel: 01295 368917
Contact us for your FREE garden construction consultation at;
Tel: 07961 141029
The Freechoice Group is a family-run company where quality of work, customer satisfaction and fair pricing are the cornerstone principles.
The Freechoice Group offers fully certified and insured specialists in a range of services for the home and business:
Telephone: 01295 250 103
Address: Unit 3, 9c Thorpe Close, Banbury, Oxfordshire, OX16 4SW
Contact David Green Decorating today for a no-obligation quotation, and advice on all your decorating or redecoration projects.
Telephone: 01295 721206
Mobile: 07790 394625
Paws Pet Supplies has been established for 26 years. We pride ourselves on supplying top quality products, specialising in wild bird food and accessories. We can also order in for you to meet all of your pets needs.
Free delivery for orders over £20.00 to the areas shown in the map below, for areas outside of this please contact us for delivery information.
Call in to Paws Pet Supplies Banbury or arrange an order over the phone for FREE delivery or collection and onsite free parking.
Address: 63 Mewburn Rd Banbury, Oxfordshire
Phone: 01295 266870
Banbury’s local party shop!
Pop in to see them at 19 Church Lane, Banbury, or give them a ring on 01295 269 472
A store for all the family selling toys, models, crafts and bikes.
Trinders has been trading in the town centre since the start of the 20th century, providing Banbury with children’s toys, kids bikes, model trains, games, crafts and puzzles.
56-59 Broad Street
Banbury OX16 5BL
30 years plus expertise puts us in that rare and highly sought after category.
YOUR CHILD is WORTH us.
For more information contact us today
Tel: 01295 275304
Private tuition for 6 – 14 year olds.
Are your managers getting the best out of them? The more skilled your staff are, the better your bottom line will be. We train, coach and assess, specialising in management and one to one skills. We’re always happy to talk through ways of moving you forward and solving your people issues.
Tel: 0845 5197 571 (local rate) / 0771 888 6708
Author of “This Year’s Must Have Book” (HR Director). Buy now
Drake Lapthorn is a health and safety consultancy that helps you to understand the health and safety needs of your business and develop pragmatic and cost-effective procedures to help you comply with all necessary regulations.
Contact Drake Lapthorn today to discuss how we can help you to improve the safe culture of your business
Tel: 01295 298 469 / 07966 614 927
Over 15 years experience as a Generalist HR Manager in both LTD and PLC companies. Passionate about providing real, workable solutions for companies in any area of HR including training, policies and procedures, handbooks, redundancy consultation, performance management, disciplinary and grievance, recruitment, employee relations.
Training, Implementing policies and procedures and redundancy handling
Tel: 0845 313 0331. Mobile: 07977 495 365
Whether you live, work or just love the Banbury area known as Banburyshire, this website is for you. You’ll find the site crammed full of useful and essential information such as travel times, news, jobs, events, articles, food, local businesses and so much more …
Job hunting? Check out the latest job vacancies by visiting the Banburyshire job page … and good luck!
Want a job vacancy published? Then simply contact us for charges by emailing your information to
To help YOU find a high quality checked out local business, head over to the Banburyshire Info directory page.
Your guide to what’s on in and around the Banbury area
Tweets that have gained a re-tweet, shared from Banburyshire info, or where we’ve joined the conversation.