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Watford General tea bars could pay the price for reopening

 Published on: 27th November 2013   |   By: The Newsdesk   |   Category:

Two volunteer tea bars at Watford General Hospital which had to close after more than fifty years will reopen early in the New Year – but at a price. For the first time, the League of Friends, which runs the facilities, will be asked to pay the cost of basic consumables such as phone and energy bills. Suggestions the organisation would also be asked to pay rent have been dismissed. Norman Tyrwhitt, chairman of the League of Friends, told My Watford News he can understand the hospital’s position. He said: “I know the hospital are going through a difficult time financially so I can understand them wanting us to making a contribution. It’s something you have to take as an overhead – we can spend the money for example on things for people to sit on or medical apparatus. All the requests come through a medical committee – the money is waiting there for when they would like it. Mr Tyrwhitt also revealed the League will also be asked to contribute towards an occupation licence for six months. Watford MP Richard Harrington said he knows the League are highly valued by the Trust and has contacted hospital bosses to ask if another solution can be found. He commented: “I can appreciate the Trust’s argument that the cost must be met from somewhere, but it does stick in the throat as this is an organisation who is so dedicated to supporting and raising funds for the Hospital itself. I would imagine that it must feel as though they just want some show of support back from the Trust which is entirely understandable.” Samantha Jones, chief executive responded to Mr Harrington’s views. She commented: “The League of Friends provide an extremely valuable service to our patients, visitors and staff and we’re keen to support them as much as we can. However, we also need to make sure that any expenses they incur are reasonable.” Read the full story in December’s My Watford News.   Photo by Hoss Photography.

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