Station closure is one step closer

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PLANS to replace the ‘dilapidated’ Battle Ambulance Station with a portable cabin in preparation to centralise services in Hastings have taken a step closer.

Rother District Council has granted temporary planning permission for the cabin, which will be built on the site of the current ambulance station in the town centre.

South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) wants to centralise services, which will mean ambulance staff who currently start and end their shifts at Battle will be required to sign in and clock off at Hastings Ambulance Station instead.

SECAmb says it will continue to provide emergency cover for the area with a new Battle Ambulance Community Response Post (ACRP).

Last month a spokesperson from SECAmb told the Observer that if planning permission was granted, the ambulance station building could close as early as the autumn.

But the same spokesperson said this week that no start date has been set for the work to be carried out.

The supporting statement submitted with the planning application says that in the long term, SECAmb hopes to build a purpose-built facility on the site to provide the Battle ACRP or vacate the site entirely and base the ACRP elsewhere in the town.

The statement added that over the years Battle Ambulance Station had ‘got into a tired state’ and is in need of costly repairs to replace the antiquated and dilapidated systems.

A member of SECAmb staff previously raised concerns that the changes could affect 999 cover in the area.