Surgery work stalls after builder firm ceases trading

MUCH needed improvements to a doctors’ surgery have stalled after the building company carrying out the scheme went into liquidation.

Drake and Plant Ltd, which were based in Felixstowe, were in the middle of a project at Leiston Surgery.

Work started on the Main Street site at the end of September and was due to finish in May.

However the building contractors have ceased trading - leaving the surgery searching for a new company to take over the works.

The scheme includes a two-storey extension that would feature new entrances, improved waiting areas and better reception facilities, along with an extra training room and a lift for improved access.

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The practice secured a grant of �300,000 from the Eastern Educational Deanery to meet some of the cost, while �10,000 was also raised by members of the local community and the Friends of Aldeburgh Community District Hospital - specifically for the lift.

Some of that money had already been given to the builders and Dr Sally Simmonds, a partner at the surgery, said they were now in negotiations to see if it could be returned. “The builders had been doing an excellent job however unfortunately they have now gone into liquidation,” she said. “It means the site has been left half built.

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“The car park for the surgery has been reduced to an absolute minimum. The Long Shop Museum next door has been very kind in allowing us to rent their space during the winter months but the museum is due to reopen soon and that space won’t be available.

“It is a bit of a desperate situation but we are doing our best to fix it. We would ask our patients to be patient. They have been incredibly good so far but they will have to bear with it a little longer.

“We will have to go out to tender again. We are currently in negotiation with the liquidators and hopefully we will get some of the lift deposit money returned.”

Chris Williams, from McTear Williams & Wood, East Anglia’s largest business rescue and insolvency practice, has been appointed as liquidator for Drake and Plant Ltd. “It’s a great shame that a long established company with such a well known local reputation is having to cease trading,” he said.

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