Liverpool FC captain, Steven Gerrard, officially opened a new state-of the-art primary care resource centre on the Knowsley estate where he grew up.
Knowsley Health & Wellbeing enlisted the help of the superstar footballer and local schoolchildren to officially open The Blue Bell Centre in Huyton, Knowsley which offers easy access to a range of primary care services.
Members of the community joined local dignitaries and Steven Gerrard to celebrate the full opening of one of the most eco-friendly health centres in the country. The Blue Bell Centre houses three GP practices, a pharmacy and a range of PCT services and has been developed in close consultation with the local community.
Steven Gerrard said: "I'm delighted to return to Blue Bell to officially open the new health centre. I spent my childhood here and I know that being able to get to everyday NHS services so close to home is crucial. Not only are the environmental aspects of the health centre impressive, it's great to see the role the local community groups and children have played in developing the scheme."
The Blue Bell Centre has been developed with a raft of environmentally-friendly design features including a turf roof and a rainwater recycling system, along with low energy medical equipment. The features will help The Blue Bell Centre achieve a low to zero carbon future and significantly reduce running costs.
Health chiefs involved local residents in the consultation stages to help shape The Blue Bell Centre's design and services. In response to local feedback, easy-to-read signage has been created by an established artist, plus adults with learning difficulties from Stockbridge Resource Centre and schoolchildren from Huyton with Roby CE, St Aidens Catholic Primary School and St Columbus' Catholic Primary School have designed public art installations at the site.
Rosemary Hawley, MBE Chair of NHS Knowsley said: "I'm thrilled to open the doors to a truly state-of-the-art health centre in the heart of our community. This is the latest primary care resource centre to open in the borough and is part of our commitment to transform Knowsley's health and wellbeing facilities and provide relevant services for the local neighbourhood.
"It was incredibly important for us to involve local residents, both adults and children alike, in the development of this project and we are proud that this project has enabled us to work closely with Knowsley Council's Arts and Heritage Service.
"I'm delighted that Steven Gerrard can join us to help celebrate the opening and see how The Blue Bell Centre has regenerated the local area."
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