South Queensferry pharmacy appeal bid by Kirkliston couple

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A bid to secure a NHS contract to open a new pharmacy in South Queensferry has failed but the pharmacists involved have mounted an appeal.

Kirkliston-based husband and wife Will and Lynn Samson wanted to open what would have been the third chemist shop in the town.

They secured the backing of all four ward councillors and the area’s MP and MSP in addition to individual support from local doctors and a consultation process aimed at the public.

Supporters felt that existing facilities in the town are oversubscribed and that this can only worsen as the town grows through the creation of new housing developments.

However, the application was rejected.

Now, Mr and Mrs Samson have been in touch with the National Appeal panel in the hope of effecting a turnaround.

And they intend to launch a petition which will soon be featured on the website of Queensferry & District Community Council.

Mr Samson believes that the odds were stacked against them as independent operators – unlike the existing premises in the town which are run by a nationwide chain.

He added: “By signing the petition, people will be giving us a chance to realise our dream and give them the pharmacy service they need and deserve in South Queensferry.”

Terry Airlie of Queensferry and District Community Council stated: “Mr Samson engaged with us at a number of our meetings and I have to say that we were extremely disappointed that the pharmacy was turned down.”

Meanwhile Councillor Kevin Lang added: “I’m very pleased that the decision to reject the proposed new pharmacy is being appealed. Queensferry is a rapidly growing community. It is important that new housing is matched with additional services, especially health services.

“The overwhelming majority of residents who responded to the original consultation said the current level of pharmacy services in the town is inadequate. That is why getting a new pharmacy into Queensferry has been so important. I’ve written directly to senior managers in NHS Lothian to support the appeal and I hope the original rejection can be overturned.”