Rabbis rally behind campaign to stop relocation of Golders Green GP practice to Finchley

Fifteen local ministers sign letter saying proposed move of Ravenscroft surgery 'discriminates against our members'


Fifteen rabbis from the Golders Green area have signed a letter claiming that the proposed relocation of the local Ravenscroft Medical Centre to Finchley Memorial Hospital “discriminates against members of our Orthodox congregations”.

The letter to the Barnet Clinical Commissioning Group and other decision-making bodies reflects widespread concern over the potential 3.2 mile move of the GP practice, which has served the community for more than 70 years.

A few thousand of Ravenscroft’s 7,000 clients are Jewish, many of them elderly.

Among the letter’s signatories was Golders Green Synagogue’s senior rabbi, Harvey Belovski, who warned that relocating to the North Finchley site would preclude the religious and elderly from seeking urgent treatment on Shabbat and festivals.

It would also “place an undue burden on young mothers, and all those who rely on being able to see doctors and other health care professionals close to home”.

The rabbis argued that a community health centre within walking distance was a vital amenity — and one that should not be overlooked by decision makers.

Ravenscroft’s present location enabled Orthodox congregants to access essential medical care on foot on religious days.

They also noted that “the only other practice on Golders Green Road is already very busy and its premises are small and outdated”.

Their congregants “should not be obliged to give up often very longstanding relationships [with Ravenscroft] and be forced to make alternative arrangements.

“We strongly request that the content of this letter be taken into account in the Equality Impact Assessment”

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