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The Foxton Action Committee had put together 28 very good reasons to retain their hospital, and these 1980 submissions were up-dated and sent on to the board - for consideration at a board meeting, in readiness for a public hearing on Thursday August 19th 1982. Mayor Mr Jim Titcombe said that the Maternity Home was a most important focal point of the town and was essentially the "heart" of the community and an irreplaceable part of its life force. Sister Lash and Jim Titcombe were both confident the home would not be closed due to the fact that the Palmerston North Hospital Board was not having its expenditure cut by 3% and they hoped there would be a number of local people at the board's meeting. Mr J Titcombe asked all townspeople and those those interested to be at the meeting to show solidarity.

Phyl Lash felt that the board would have to be very strong-minded if they forced a closure after all the evidence and support from the Foxton community.

At the public hearing by the Hospital Advisory council in the Foxton Memorial hall, the Palmerston North Hospital Board's 16 page submissions with their strong reasons for closure were put forward. These were presented by chief executive Mr G Gordon.
The Foxton and Districts Action Committee and local people fought back with their submissions against the closure. Members of the Hospital Advisory Council hearing the ents. They submissions were: Dr F W Rutter, (chairman of Auckland Hospital Board), Dr WA Fraser, (Waikato Hospital Board member) and Miss B Sutherland (the Health Department, Wellington)
(The hearing bean at 10.00am and finished at 3.00pm)
During this time, approximately 300 local people showed their support, many staying for the duration. There was a good media representation.

The Mayor of Foxton Mr J L Titcombe was the leader of the attack on the boards' case. ving three He stated that the town was changing from a mostly retirement area to one with more families, due to the new Foxton Beach sewerage scheme which would open-up the area to more permanent housing and people - the opening of the farms at Moutoa, would bring in 30 or more young couples. Also, industry and horticulture were developing in and around the area and with the up-skilling and stronger marketing of the carpet factory, more employment was a surety from there as it was a main employer in the town.

Mr Titcombe concluded by saying he understood the hospital board's monetary concerns, but he hoped that the cost to the community far out-weighed economic measures.

Mr Gordon thanked members of the Foxton community for hearing the board's possible reasons. He and the Board were impressed by the sincerity, compassion and vigour in which they conducted their case.

Dr Rutter thanked everyone for receiving the hearing with good humour and that they (the Board) would give careful consideration to all information given and will report back to the Health Minister Mr Aussie Malcolm.


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Foxton Maternity Home 1942-1982 Page 47


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