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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Old court might house doctor's surgery

A WHITEHAVEN doctor’s surgery could be re-locating to a former courts building, if planning consent is given.

Instead of dishing out justice, it would be health advice and prescriptions being administered from the former Whitehaven Magistrates Court building at Catherine Street.

The Trinity House Surgery, of partners Dr Thomas Ickes and Dr Aidan Timney and team, would move from 17 Irish Street to take over the ground floor of the court building.

Trinity House is Grade II listed, dating from the 1700s. The courts closed in 2011, after a campaign to keep them open. It was part of a national government shake-up under which 142 criminal and civil courts were closed or amalgamated. All Whitehaven cases were transferred to West Cumbria Courthouse at Workington. It was expected to save around £260,000 a year plus maintenance costs.

Cockermouth architects Day Cummins, acting as agent for the surgery, has applied to Copeland for change of use consent in respect of part of the ground floor.

It is understood negotiations to purchase the court buildings are current. If the project succeeds, it may provide opportunities for other health-related activities to occupy the upper floor, subject to planning approval.

Change of use consent is also being sought from Copeland in respect of the former Ironside’s doctor’s surgery at 22 Irish Street, from commercial to residential. The surgery relocated to Queen Street in 2006.

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