Last week, the Council delivered a letter launching legal action against Jeremy Hunt’s disgraceful decision to press ahead with the downgrade of Lewisham Hospital’s maternity and emergency services.
The letter makes clear to the Secretary of State and to the Trust Special Administrator that I do not believe that they had the statutory power to make such major changes to Lewisham Hospital. They have until the 22 February to withdraw his decision affecting Lewisham Hospital.
We are advised, and I believe, that we have a very good case. Of course we run a risk that we may be forced to pay legal costs should we not win our case outright. But the strength of feeling in the Council, and in the community, that this is such an important issue it is a risk worth taking. The Council is in the best position in the community to take the leadership on this issue now and to pursue the argument in the courts.
I have already been asked by local people how they can support this legal action. That is why the Council has set up a ‘Fighting Fund’ to enable people to make their own financial contribution to the legal action . I would be delighted if you wanted to make a donation, no matter how large or small. Any money that is unspent will be donated to a local health charity, Children First Lewisham.