Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee question the Trust Special Administrator

I want to reassure people that the County Council is using its influence to ensure we get the best outcome for people on the future of the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust.

A lot of work is going into this, in particular the Healthy Staffordshire Select Committee asked the Trust Special administrator to attend a meeting to answer questions on the proposals. The committee’s work in conjunction with the Council’s wider efforts clearly shows our commitment to responding robustly to the TSA and ensuring that Stafford and Staffordshire has the health services it deserves.

A new, more integrated delivery model for the local NHS, the continuation of maternity services in Stafford and a single acute trust working for Staffordshire is what I would like to see. But these are early days and we are still putting these ideas together.

We need to find a solution that will improve health services for local people and the county council will work with all our partners to create a healthier, happier and more prosperous Staffordshire.

Again, I would urge people to get involved in the consultations, either at the events or via the website.

Moving from health to history, I am looking forward to an exciting archaeology project to unearth a Great War terrain model on Cannock Chase. 2014 is the Centenary year for the First World War and in Staffordshire our cultural and historical heritage during that horrendous war is being unveiled in new ways.

Archaeologists along with volunteers have just started work to clear the ground to unearth a large concrete terrain model representing a section of the Great War battle of Messines Ridge in 1917.

The model was built at Brocton Camp which, along with the camp at Rugeley, was used for the training of over half a million men during the First World War. Using a scale model of the defences on the Messines ridge allowed the British to plan and prepare the attack and ensure a level of planning that helped to avoid the disasters of previous attacks in earlier years.

Once the model has been excavated, the trench will be documented and recorded, and will be made available for public viewing before it is reburied to preserve it for future generations.

You can follow me on Twitter @pebatkins

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