The 1.8m x 1.2m card will be set up in the Haymarket shopping centre from 10.30am today, giving shoppers the chance to show their support for the campaign to save the centre on a day when matters of the heart are uppermost in people’s minds.
Deputy City Mayor Cllr Rory Palmer has organised the Valentine’s Day-themed event as he continues to urge NHS England to reconsider its proposal to close the children’s heart centre at Glenfield.
“On Valentine’s Day, when many people will be reflecting on matters of the heart, we’ve got an opportunity to remind NHS England and the Government that there’s a lot of love in Leicester for the Glenfield children’s heart centre,” he said.
“Nearly 130,000 people have signed a petition to save the unit, hundreds of primary school children have taken part in a day of action to show their support for the campaign, and more than 1,000 people joined the latest protest on Saturday. I hope that hundreds more will show their love for the unit by adding their names to our Valentine’s card tomorrow.”
The giant card – which bears the ‘Hold on to our Hearts’ logo, developed by the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust – will be in the Clock Tower mall at the Haymarket shopping centre until 4pm tomorrow.
It will then be moved to the entrance hall at Glenfield Hospital.
NHS England launched a national consultation on the future of congenital heart disease services last week. The online survey can be completed at www.engage.england.nhs.uk
The consultation will run until Monday 5 June.
As part of the consultation process, NHS England has organised a question time event, which will be held at the Leicester Tigers on 9 March at 5.45pm. Places – which are limited – must be reserved online.
A march in support of the Glenfield children’s heart centre took place in Leicester on Saturday (11 February) and a petition, bearing nearly 130,000 signatures, was handed into Downing Street last week.
Leicester City Council has put £50,000 into a fighting fund to help pay for costs that may be incurred in securing the future of the children’s heart centre.