Save Lewisham Hospital campaigners take fight to Health Secretary's Surrey home town (From This Is Local London)
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Save Lewisham Hospital campaigners take fight to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt's Surrey home town
CAMPAIGNERS battling to save Lewisham Hospital took their fight to Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s home town to win over his own constituents.
Around 120 people travelled to Farnham, in Surrey, to march in the rain in their ‘hunt for Hunt’ event following the Health Secretary’s decision to downgrade Lewisham Hospital’s maternity and A&E services.
Organisers say residents of the market town were "extremely supportive" of the cause and around 1,000 signatures were collected against NHS hospital closures at the protest on June 15.
Co-organiser Shannon Hawthorne, who was born at Lewisham Hospital and lives off Sydenham High Street, said: "We went to visit Mr Hunt’s constituents to explain to them why his plans for the NHS are so dangerous for all of us.
"It went really well, despite the fact that the heavens opened as we got there.
"The local residents were extremely supportive.
"I was a little bit concerned about intimidating locals but they seemed to love it and were beeping their horns.
"Lewisham people and London demos know to get a good vibe going and marching in the rain gave an extra feeling that we are really fighting – an extra element of dedication to the cause."
Save Lewisham Hospital campaigners led the event, which was sponsored by UNITE, and were joined by others fighting to save threatened hospital services including at Hammersmith, Kingston, Ealing, Newham and Hackney.
The 26-year-old charity journalist added: "We are really fighting for every hospital.
"Only a few years ago, Mr Hunt told Farnham residents that people feel ‘very passionately that they want a locally-delivered NHS’ - and yet he has seen fit to close vital hospital services across the country putting the lives of local communities at risk."
It comes as the Save Lewisham Hospital campaign raised enough cash for their legal fight against Mr Hunt’s decision with a judicial review taking place next month alongside Lewisham Council's own legal bid.
To find out more visit savelewishamhospital.com
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