Locals are campaigning for a new village GP surgery to be built after plans to scrap their existing service were shelved.

The Tolsey Surgery on Sherston High Street came under threat of closure when plans to shut it down and relocate patients and staff to the primary care centre in Malmesbury were revealed.

This prompted outrage amongst locals and a campaign was launched to save the surgery, which has since led to the local Integrated Care Board (ICB) apologising and withdrawing the draft plans.

But councillors and residents remain wary they could still lose the service in the future and are now pushing for a newly built local surgery to safeguard its future.

This scheme has been in the works for over a decade, after consultation from Wiltshire Council, the practice, and Sherston Parish Council, and would be funded by a new housing development.

Councillor Tanya Burgess, the chair of the parish council, said: “From our perspective, we’re not sitting on our laurels because we’re concerned there remains a real threat to the future of the surgery.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: A poster to save the surgeryA poster to save the surgery (Image: Sherston Parish Council)“We’re mounting a full campaign, the main objective of which is to obtain confirmation from the ICB that they will support the planned new build.

“Until such time, we’re assuming the overall intention is still to close the surgery so we’re pushing on with our campaign.”

After the announcement, many were quick to criticise the potential impact on those who would need to make their way to Malmesbury, particularly those who can’t drive, and the lack of consultation with those affected.

Many wrote to MP James Gray who also objected to the proposals.

This sparked an email from the ICB retracting the plans.

It said: “The ICB would like to apologise for any concerns or distress caused by the content of these documents to our GPs and GP Practice staff and our local residents.

“The ICB are now fully retracting the Output document in full until a time when further work and review has been completed.”

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The Tolsey Surgery in SherstonThe Tolsey Surgery in Sherston (Image: Google Maps)A leaflet and poster campaign has now been launched supporting the new surgery while a public meeting on the issue will be held at Sherston Village Hall, at 7pm on October 5.

“It’s all anyone is talking about in the village, I can’t walk down the High Street without somebody asking about it”, added Cllr Burgess.

The ICB did not respond to a request for comment but previously told this paper that the original plans were merely a draft and subject to further scrutiny.