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Letter: The Impact of the Boots Closure in Merrow Park

Published on: 14 Oct, 2023
Updated on: 14 Oct, 2023

Boots Pharmacy, Merrow Park – Google Street View

From: Frank Phillipson

I hear that the Boots Pharmacy at Merrow Park, opposite the doctor’s surgery, is to close in about four week’s time.
I know that Boots is “concentrating” their operations on fewer stores and that there are similar situations in the country, but to close a very well-used pharmacy adjacent to a GP’s surgery seems ridiculous.
I appreciate that Boots does have a smaller pharmacy in the shopping area on Epsom Road at Merrow but I hardly think it will cope if Merrow Park closes, and that is if the Merrow pharmacy is itself to remain open?
Boots has said of the closures that “in all cases there is an alternative store less than three miles away” and “most people would still be within a 10-minute drive of a Boots”. This comes on top of the loss of the Lloyds pharmacy in Sainsbury’s at Burpham.
It all smacks of the US owners of Boots regarding its profits with very much greater importance than its customers.
I also understand that the government subsidises pharmacies, “It provides £2.59 billion of funding, annually, to fund NHS pharmacy services in England” (source: The Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework in England).
If so, why is it that the government does not have some form of insistence on the provision of pharmacies accessible to communities?

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Responses to Letter: The Impact of the Boots Closure in Merrow Park

  1. Margaret Rotherham Reply

    October 14, 2023 at 10:51 am

    Boots in Epsom Road has already found it difficult to cope with the increase in prescription-requests, since Lloyd’s in Sainsbury’s closed. The pharmacist and other staff are all wonderful, but they seem really to struggle with the onslaught they have already had dumped on them.

  2. Jim Allen Reply

    October 14, 2023 at 12:10 pm

    Medical Services reduced while housing increasing
    Road space reduced by SCC more transport needed
    More housing accepted by GBC in town centre NO new sewer pipes

    irrational inversion of infrastructure to demand

  3. Jan Messinger Reply

    October 15, 2023 at 9:09 pm

    Sadly I personally think very soon there will be no pharmacies and that there will be a central depot with “Amazon style” deliveries all over the country with little white vans. Soon there will be no interaction with a human.

    You often need advise or assistance at a pharmacy. Sadly, I fear those days are numbered and I can only see it getting worse.

  4. Angela Macfarlane (Mrs) Reply

    December 30, 2023 at 12:30 pm

    They should close Boots at Merrow. It’s a small shop with not as much choice of items to buy.

    Although t=here is a consultancy room for times when you need to speak with the pharmacist in private and they offer the Flu Jab too.
    the service is not as good as other branches.

  5. Janet Reply

    January 2, 2024 at 8:00 am

    As a customer of the chemist on Epsom Road, Burpham, I can confirm that they will not cope with any more customers, the premises are just too small. The queues at present are known to go out the door. The only way they could cope is to operate as a prescription only collection point, remove shelving in main shop and not sell any goods.

    Alternatively, the premises at Boots, Merrow Park, are larger. Did no-one consider relocating the Epsom Road chemist to Merrow Park?

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