A DECADE-long dream to build a health centre in Buckley is finally set to come to fruition.
A date has now been set for work to start on the long awaited medical centre at the former Belmont Special School site, on Mill Lane, subject to planning permission.
Betsi Cadwaldr University Health Board and the Welsh Government have been at loggerheads over the rental value of the proposed site, but an agreement has now been reached.
The health board is due to submit a planning application next month and is expecting planning approval to be granted by September.
Construction is scheduled to begin in late September with an open date of January 2014.
The Buckley community is thrilled at the news.
Cllr Dennis Hutchinson said: “This is very good news as it’s been a long time coming.
“It’s an enormous facility that we need in the town. It’s a pity it’s going where it’s going because we would have preferred it in the town centre, but we have to work with what we are given.
“If it’s got to go there then so be it, I don’t think there will be any objections.”
Councillors and residents have campaigned tirelessly for 11 years to bring their vision of the town’s future healthcare to life but they have come up against a host of setbacks.
It was initially hoped for a town centre location and in 2009 the multi-million pound plans were plunged into doubt when the Marches Medical Centre pulled out of the development.
The health board has now devised a scaled down facility, which will house the town’s Roseneath and Bradley surgeries.
Alyn and Deeside AM Carl Sargeant is delighted the plans are finally moving forward.
He said: “Through correspondence with the Welsh Government Health Minister and the local health board I have learnt the project is being progressed as a matter of urgency and that subject to planning approval construction should start on the site this September.
“This news is fantastic for the people of Buckley, giving them a state-of-the-art facility on their doorstep.
“The process to date has been quite drawn out, so I am glad that by working closely with the Welsh Government and the Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board we have been able to expedite matters.”