Plans to transform Budleigh Salterton Hospital into a modern health and wellbeing hub for the local community have been given the go-ahead.

The Budleigh Hub will be open to all, with the main focus on the communities in Budleigh Salterton, Exmouth and Woodbury along with surrounding villages and hamlets. Together, the Budleigh Hub will provide a service for nearly 50,000 people.

It’s a joint project developed over the past four years between NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group (NHS NEW Devon CCG), Exminster based charity Westbank Community Health and Care, the League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital, Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust (RD&E) and NHS Property Services.

The CCG has been a key partner and a longtime supporter of the Budleigh Hub initiative and is keen to see the project come into reality.

Rebecca Harriott, Chief Executive of NHS NEW Devon CCG, said:

"I am really pleased to be able to tell the community that the project has progressed and this is great news for the local community. The Budleigh Hub is a new partnership approach, combining health and wellbeing, social care and voluntary sector services in one centre."

Mary Nisbett, Chief Executive of Westbank, said:

"We are very much looking forward to launching the Budleigh Hub in Budleigh Salterton and have many years of experience based on our centre in Exminster, which serves a much wider area.

"Bringing health, social care and well-being services together, as they will be at the Budleigh Hub, is a vision of the future and what can be achieved through partnership and focusing on the needs of the local community. It will be a centre for a wide range of services in one place and it will provide a range of social and clinical services with the focus on prevention, rehabilitation and wellbeing. Services will include NHS outpatient clinics, day centre, gym, café alongside health and wellbeing services such as diabetes and weight management support, dementia support, exercise classes, carers support, family groups, arts and craft and music."

The League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital, a major partner in the project, has made a £150,000 contribution to re-develop Budleigh Hospital into the Budleigh Hub. Building work is due start in January, with the Budleigh Hub opening in April.

Dr David Evans, Chairman of the League of Friends of Budleigh Salterton Hospital, said:

"The provision of a health and wellbeing hub in Budleigh Salterton Hospital represents a modern and innovative approach for care in the community.

"Once implemented, it will set a standard that other small community hospitals could follow. The League of Friends committee feels that a Budleigh Hub, adapted for the provision of local needs, is in the very best interests of the community of Budleigh Salterton and its hospital. The League of Friends is holding our annual coffee morning on the 15 December and we look forward to presenting the new Hub plans to our local community".

The Budleigh Hub will be managed and run by Westbank Community Health and Care, which has been involved in all the stages of developing the project since its inception in 2012.

Dr Richard Mejzner, a GP at Budleigh Salterton Medical Centre and a member of the Clinical Commissioning Group’s Eastern locality board, has been instrumental in developing the vision with the local community over the past four years.

He said:

"I am delighted with the news that the NEW Devon CCG, Westbank, the RD&E, the League of Friends and NHS Property Services have approved the development of a hub at Budleigh Salterton Hospital and wish to thank them for their work on this project.

"I also want to acknowledge the unfailing support of Westbank and the League of Friends who, without this, it would not have been possible to realise this exciting and innovative vision."

The RD&E is looking to provide a range of NHS outpatient services at the Hub for the benefit of the local community.

Em Wilkinson-Brice, RD&E Deputy Chief Executive/Chief Nurse, who has been leading the Trust’s integration programme and is delighted to see the Budleigh Hub very near completion said:

"It is very exciting for the RD&E to be a partner in this endeavour. Critical to the new model of care is the bringing together of services and organisations as close to where people live, in natural communities, as possible. We are looking forward to engaging now in the detailed planning looking towards the grand opening in April."

During the New Year the Budleigh Hub project team will arrange events so that the local community can find out more about the Budleigh Hub, the services it will offer and identify what additional services they would like to see set-up.

Residents who would like to register for more information about the Budleigh Hub and its services can contact Rob Jones, Budleigh Hub Project Manager on telephone: 07787 575637 email: [email protected] or visit


Editors Notes

The focus of the Budleigh Hub is about delivering the Staying Well, Prevention of Ill Health Agenda and generating social capital across the community. Following an extensive programme of engagement with the local health, social, voluntary and commercial sectors, the following activities list provides an indication of the likely expected provision;

• Dementia support services

• Diabetes and healthy lifestyle services

• Cook and chat, healthy cooking style classes and baking lessons

• Cafe / bistro with an internet café that all can use

• Fitness (gym) and exercise classes for the whole community

• Yoga, Spinning and other classes

• Holistic therapy services

• Support for carers

• Volunteer support for patients living at home- driving, befriending, practical support

• Volunteer opportunities for people wanting to become involved in the local community

• Family time for the pre-school children and their parents/carers

• Mother and toddler support and social activities

• Art groups and classes

• Jigsaw, knitting and craft activities

• Mental health services and support

• Social activities for the whole community

• Meeting rooms and conference facilities (bookable for use by a range of services and groups)

• A range of NHS outpatient services

• Support for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and eating disorders

• Access to general information and advice on a range of wellbeing, welfare and other subjects

• Access to educational resources around Health and Wellbeing

• Access to family planning and sexual health services

The Budleigh Hub is not limited to these activities, which are likely to develop and change according to demand and local community need.

For further information, please contact the relevant press office:

· NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group – Sarah Hyde, 01392 267647 [email protected]

· Westbank Community Health and Care - Wendy Hancock, Communications and Marketing Manager 01392 824752, 07872 061144 [email protected]

· Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust – James Garnett, Communications Manager 01392 402833, [email protected]