£1million investment by Executive will transform lives in East Belfast – Ross and Fearon

Date published: 22 June 2016

Junior Minister Alastair Ross and Junior Minister Megan Fearon today opened the Bridges Family Practice on Belfast’s Newtownards Road following a £1million investment from the Executive’s Social Investment Fund.

Junior Ministers pictured with local artist Deirdre Robb
Junior Ministers pictured with local artist Deirdre Robb

The medical practice, originally called Bryson Street Surgery, underwent a major redevelopment after the building had deteriorated badly over the last decade. 

Speaking at the opening, Junior Minister Alastair Ross said: “I am pleased to be in East Belfast today to officially open the recently redeveloped Bridges Family Practice. The Northern Ireland Executive, through the Social Investment Fund, provided funding of £1million towards the regeneration of this previously run down site creating a modern medical facility. Providing the best possible healthcare is a top priority in our recently published Programme for Government Framework and facilities such as this will ensure the health and well-being of the people of East Belfast for years to come.

“The Social Investment Fund is about empowering the community to identify its own needs and develop proposals to address them. Bridges Family Practice is a working example of how that innovative approach has delivered.  It is now really making a difference to the local community and I commend all the local people involved in making this project a success.”

Junior Minister, Megan Fearon said: “This £1million investment will transform not only the practice but the life prospects of the people of East Belfast.

“The Executive provided £1million financial support through the Social Investment Fund to make this idea which local people came up with a reality. This is a real example of what can be achieved when communities and government work together.

“This vital facility is an important part of the local landscape and history, and as a direct result of this major investment and redevelopment will be an important part of its shared future.

“The health of our people is of paramount importance and this surgery provides a modern, well equipped facility which I am confident will serve all the people of East Belfast for generations.”

The redevelopment of the Bridges Family Practice was managed by East Side Partnership and a further £15,000 was secured from The Executive Office’s Urban Villages initiative to commission a piece of art for the exterior of the building. 

Notes to editors: 

  1. Media enquiries to The Executive Office press office on 028 9037 8201. Out of office hours, please contact the duty press office via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.
  2. Photographs from The Executive Office events can be viewed via Flickr.

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