7,000 people rallied in Guildford last Saturday as part of a fight to save the Royal Surrey Hospital from closure.
The protestors included local residents, MPs and hospital staff, who are trying to prevent cuts to the Royal Surrey's services which could well lead to complete closure of the hospital. The NHS say the cuts will save £100 million. Any closures would put a great strain on the nearby Frimley Park Hospital which serves military personnel as well as the public.
Protestors described a mood of anger and determination throughout the rally. A wide cross section of local residents were in attendance, with both the elderly and teenagers taking an active role.
The Royal Surrey serves Guildford, Aldershot and Farnborough, and has one of the lowest motrality rates in the country. The A&E department is under direct threat, as is the cancer treatment centre, which serves 1.2 million people. The NHS move to save money is also likely to pit the Royal Surrey and St. Peter's Hospital against each other for funding.
Saturday's rally was the launch of what campaigners hope to be a strong battle, and staff at the Royal Surrey are playing a key organisational role. Another rally is planned for this Saturday in Grayshott Village Square at 12pm.
For further information, contact susie.furniss @ savetheroyalsurrey.org.uk or visit the campaign's website