Doncaster Tory MP takes swipe at mayor as his own Government rejects new hospital for city

Doncaster's Conservative MP has taken a swipe at the city’s mayor after his own Government threw out plans for a new hospital for Doncaster.
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Don Valley MP Nick Fletcher accused Doncaster mayor Ros Jones of playing ‘party politics’ after the Government announced yesterday that it would not be replacing crumbling Doncaster Royal Infirmary with a state of the art new hospital planned for a city centre waterfront site.

Both former Prime Minister Boris Johnson and former health secretary Matt Hancock had given strong indications that Doncaster was at the top of the list for a new hospital – but those hopes have been dashed after the Government said Doncaster would miss out, despite relentless campaigning by local politicans

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Now Mr Fletcher has taken aim at the mayor, writing on social media: “I see that party politics is being played out by the Mayor. I will deal with that later. For now be assured I remain completely focussed on the campaign.”

Doncaster Conservative MP Nick Fletcher took a swipe at mayor Ros Jones over the Government not choosing the city for a  new hospital.Doncaster Conservative MP Nick Fletcher took a swipe at mayor Ros Jones over the Government not choosing the city for a  new hospital.
Doncaster Conservative MP Nick Fletcher took a swipe at mayor Ros Jones over the Government not choosing the city for a new hospital.

Mr Fletcher has been repeatedly accused of playing party politics over the closure of Doncaster Sheffield Airport, placing blame for the closure at the door of the mayor, Doncaster Council and South Yorkshire Mayor Oliver Coppard.

Responding to the Government’s announcement, Mr Fletcher said: “We need a new hospital.

“As we know, we’ve not yet secured that promise of a new £1.37 billion hospital to replace our ageing DRI.

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"It is a huge sum of money. The Secretary of State for Health made a statement in Parliament on where the 40 new hospitals would be. Doncaster was not one of the newly announced five.

“However the fact is that we need a new hospital. My campaign carries on and I will only stop when we get that new hospital.

“I’ve held lots of meetings with many people both in and outside of government.

"Whoever might be able to help be they doctors, nurses, Ministers and MPs. I will meet them. I also meet regularly with the Chief Executive of the DRI to ensure we keep each other up to speed on what we are doing.”

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Yesterday, Mayor Jones said: “I am immensely disappointed that our Doncaster bid for a new hospital has been turned down by Government.

"Our bid was incredibly strong, highlighting the far-reaching benefits for health and medical provision that a state-of-the-art new hospital would bring as well as social and economic benefits for the people of our city and the region.

“We are in urgent need of a new hospital for Doncaster that would support us to Level Up and I will continue to lobby this government to deliver a new hospital for Doncaster.

In a joint statement with Labour MPs Dame Rosie Winterton, she said: “This is a bitter blow to our City from a Government that keeps failing to deliver for Doncaster.

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“The former Prime Minister said that Doncaster was, “very much in the running,” for a new hospital. The former Health Secretary said, “I can see a strong case why Doncaster needs to be one of the hospitals we build.”

"Time and time again, the Government has raised the hopes of Doncaster residents only to have them dashed.

“Despite visits from two Secretaries of States and from Ministers, there has been nothing to show for it. These warm words have turned out to be empty words which are totally worthless. Ministers may enjoy visiting Doncaster, but what Doncaster really needs is Government investment.

“The Government has ignored the desperate problems on the existing DRI site and are ignoring the health and safety of residents.

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“We would like to thank everyone who worked so hard putting together the strategic and business case for the new hospital. We know that they will be bitterly disappointed by this announcement.

“We will not give up the fight for the vision of a new hospital and regeneration for our City. But it is now clear it won’t be delivered by this government.”