About Friends of the Croft

Anyone registered with The Croft Practice who is interested in joining the Group is welcome to do so, and we would appreciate your input and feedback about the services we offer, and possible future plans.

If you would like to know more, or may be interested in joining the committee, please feel free to contact a member of the management team, who will be delighted to give you more information.

Next Meetings

  • 15 March 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 3 May 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 14 June 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 2 August 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 13 September 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 1 November 2024 2pm to 4pm
  • 20 December 2024 2pm to 4pm

All meeting will be held at Eastergate Parish Hall, Eastergate, Chichester, PO20 3RP

Join Our Patient Group

We are always looking for ways to improve our service to you. To help in this process we would invite you to join our Patient Group.

If you would be interested in participating you can ask at reception.

Confidentiality: the mailing list is maintained by the Practice, and will not be shared with any member of The Croft Patient Group without your expressed consent, in line with GDPR regulations.


Friends of The Croft Monthly Meeting

Meeting Date: 2nd February 2024


  • Kevin Allsobrook (KA) – UCP/PPG Lead

Meeting Notetaker

  • Tammy Strudwick (TS) – Patient Care Coordinator


  • Patrick Dealtry
  • Julie Cruickshank
  • Kate Jackson
  • Moira

People Present

  • Lyn Dean
  • John Searancke
  • Adrian Sealy
  • Colin Levett-Sealy
  • Michael Hunt
  • Marion Hunt
  • Diane Dalton
  • Mary Nightingale

Summary of Discussion

Welcome new attendees

Welcome to Mary Nightingale.

Previous Minutes

PPG meeting are being minuted again due to this being a requirement for CQC who are coming out next week to inspect the practice on the area we didn’t do so well in last time (well lead).

Opening times have been updated, the website has been updated to reflect this as well as almost anything can now be done or requested electronically.

We are still well ahead of other practices in the area with 3000 more appointments for our patients.

What will happen with Meadowcroft? When we move into new build Meadowcroft may stay open for a while to help with the transition but eventually will close.

Where will those patients go? Avisford? No as far as we are aware Avisford has closed its books to new patients so the existing Yapton patients will come to Eastergate.

Who’s filing all the new rooms? Physio, specialist nurses, more Urgent care practitioners, more GP’s but GP’s will be a gradual thing as they can’t start until the new build is open.

DNA statistics will be placed on the TV screen in reception as part of a rolling adverting board, there will be all sorts of information on there.

Is Meadowcroft still owned by partners? Yes.

Is there a list of volunteers? This is to be discussed but we are hoping to have volunteers for things like flu clinics the way there was volunteers for covid vaccinations.

New Premises update

Roof is now on and lined, scaffolding up, insulation is on, on Monday the cladding will start to go up, this is not predicted to take long therefore possibly mid-February scaffolding will come back down and the  second fix will start. We are still on target for August 2024.

The car park is still in the hands of the contactors. There has been a few accidents in the current car park, no staff except the on the day duty team are allowed to park in there, they are having to park in local residential streets or at the cricket field. Parking on the verges is dangerous as created blind spots. But this won’t be for much longer hopefully.

IT update - Sub group volunteers

Kevin would like to put together some smaller sub groups 2/4 people tops who can focus on social media, the website etc. We have a walk in cervical screening clinic on 24.02.24 that needs to be well advertised. All in agreement this clinic is a great idea and if works others to follow. Kevin has asked for anyone interested to email him. Kevin explains what I want Great Care .org is and how patients can review the clinician a bit like trip adviser.

There have been some messages/links sent out to patients to trial this. The sms service is not working for all patients. Tammy will look into this.

Should minutes be on the website? Discussion around this is held and decided yes they should. It is agreed names will only be at top of minutes in future. 

Sustainability update

Kevin has been doing a lot of research into this, Solar panels, Batteries, Kevin will be applying for as many grants as possible to assist with this aspect of the new build, Kevin asks if anyone has any knowledge or able to help with this. Can definitely help with researching websites.

Why are solar panels being spoken about now? Because the Health authority will want to build for minimal costs, therefore grants will be needed for the extras like solar panels. Would it be an option to have the wiring in place ready for solar panels, batteries etc then attach when all in place? Kevin to look into this.

Fund raising update - sub group volunteers

Kevin starts with the amazing news that Colin and Adrian have generously offered to pay for a Bed/chair and thanks both for their generosity.

Since the last meeting we have also managed to raise £320 towards another. The suggestion of sending an email to all PPG members asking for a small donation? Group unsure if this is suitable. Maybe email a leaflet to all patients? Managing Partner has given the ok for a Just Giving page but we would have to register as a charity first, to do that four trustees from the group would be needed alongside Kevin and Sam Pegg who would both oversee. This is needed to make sure everything is run legally. All trustees would make the final decisions on how any funding would be spent.

Again if anyone is interested to email Kevin.

It is mentioned that Just Giving take a percentage as a cut, Kevin states that this is correct however if registered as a kick fund this would reduce the cut.

Kevin will do a bit more research into this.

Crowdfunding is discussed Kevin is looking at this with the possibility of helping certain patients that may need the help (patient permitting) for example a patient that would benefit from treatment abroad that isn’t available in the UK. This would be good for the patient, the PPG and The Croft. All in agreement with this idea.

Other fundraising ideas mentioned are coffee shop run by volunteers, cake stall, coffee machine.

Kevin mentions researching a new machine that would be placed in reception to take Blood Pressure, Height, Weight Body mass. If the BP is high this will trigger an alert to reception who will book a patient in on the day to be seen. The machine will be linked to the systm one computer system that we currently use. All agree this is a fabulous idea. Will free up more nursing appointments. Kevin states the cost of this is about £9500.00 to buy outright with a 3 year warranty. Alternatively can be rented for 3 years at a cost of £390.00 a month plus VAT but it will pay for itself fairly quickly. All agree an area within reception will need to be segregated off for privacy including a chair.

Kevin has managed to secure a new blood pressure monitor for free.

All agree if the above is purchased and placed in reception will need to be heavily promoted possibly even with an article in the local paper?

What is the life span of the machine? Will have three year warranty but hopefully its life span will be more than this. Kevin states he can possibly get the machine for a free one month trial.


The possibility of a partner GP joining one of the meetings is raised even if just for a 20 minute chat. Kevin states he has asked, will keep asking but will aim to try and have a GP join a meeting briefly in the new build, would be easier there as the meetings will be onsite rather than at the village hall.

Kevin states all upcoming meetings for this year are now on the website as well as today’s agenda.

A review on the website stating a patient did not know who they saw was raised. Kevin states he is in the process of updating the website with clinician’s profiles, maybe not pictures but definitely small bios.

This has been started with the nursing team and Kevin.

Kevin mentions he is also working on building new clinical rotas which will hopefully be implemented when we move over, hopefully this will lessen the wait time as the current routine appointment is not until April.

Will it work? Yes works in other surgeries.

Total reorganisation of clinics and the New BP machine are extremely positive steps.

Confirm date of next meeting

Next meeting 15/03/2024 2pm at The Village Hall. Apologies are made on behalf of 2 members in advance.

See our previous meeting minutes

Meeting Date: 8th December 2023


  • Kevin Allsobrook (KA) – UCP/PPG Lead

Meeting Notetaker

  • Tammy Strudwick (TS) – Patient Care Coordinator


  • Alison Brunton
  • Stephanie Bell
  • Diane Dalton

People Present

  • John Searancke
  • Lyn
  • Kate Jackson
  • Adrian Sealy
  • Colin LevettSealy
  • Julie Cruickshank
  • Marian Hunt
  • Michael Hunt
  • Patrick Dealtry
  • Liz Bailey
  • Caroline North

Summary of Discussion


KA introduces himself and requests all in room give a small introduction.

Follow up from last meeting

Opening times: The practice is currently open Saturday mornings for pre booked appointments only with 2 GP’s and nursing team. Also the surgery opens weekdays at 7am for early risers. Therefore the surgery will not be opening until 20.00 hrs twice a week at this moment in time. It is discussed that website needs altering to reflect the Saturday clinics – KA to arrange this to be altered.

Discussion leads to how these appointments are available to book via the AirMid app as well as the traditional ways of booking. TS reiterates these appointments are pre bookable only not on the day appointments.

KA moves onto inform group within the last 3 months we have supplied 3000 more appointments than the rest of the PCN, these can be booked via the AirMid/ NHS apps as well as traditional ways of booking. (These are also only with clinicians from The Croft not the Livi GP’s) 

Feedback around Clinicians asking patients to book an appointment in a week’s time but nothing available for 3 weeks- this is no longer the case due to the above appointments being put in place.

Question: Which app do patients use? – This is mentioned in the above discussion. 

Time on the telephone no longer states your 7th in the queue. There happened to be a time frame for 24 hrs only where the call number was removed- This has to have been the day you called John. The system is now back in place again. Feedback is that overall the queue system on the phones works well. 

KA states that moving forward the meetings are to be used in a positive way not as a sounding board for gripes. “Come with a problem by all means but also come with a solution” Ideally a positive group to assist with moving the practice forward.  – Group state will still get negative feedback which all agree is ok to a minimum but the group needs to be proactive in future. 

KA confirms the Management has a range of backgrounds and experience which provides great insight and helps with future growth and development, working with the GP Partners. 


Although we would usually give patients roughly 10 mins after an appointment time before they are marked as DNA, this is somewhat impossible to do at the moment due to the issues within the road closure.

At the moment DNA’s average 100 a week. The group suggest a poster showing statistics, unable to name and shame but could patients be contacted? Possibly warning to deduct letters? Promote the cancellation line more. TS informs patients are contacted including letters re deduction.

Possibly use the screen in reception to advertise the DNA totals including showing the costings of the DNA’s. KA to look into the possibility of using the screen again. Can the phone line for cancellations be altered to cover lateness as well as cancellations? KA to look into this.

New Premises update

When new builders took over they predicted 50 wks turnaround. We are currently looking at August 2024 completion moving into new build completely September 2024. As a whole team we have to look at the logistics of a move on this scale, do we close and use Meadowcroft for emergencies only for a week? IT have suggested they could do their section overnight? Different suggestions from the group include using the village hall, Home visits, just an emergency service for 1 week, volunteers from the community to assist with the move and set up, use a local moving company and offer free advertising for them as a payment. ? ASAP removals along A27 may help? All agree the move and disruption needs to be advertised to the community in pleasantly of time. At least 3 months’ notice.

KA to feedback these suggestions to management. KA does point out however this is approached we have to be careful due to the amount of sensitive paperwork etc that will be moved (patient confidentiality).

The thought of a change of name to go with the new building is raised with the group with KA suggestion this could be a community decision also. Different ideas discussed today are “The New Croft” “The Croft Medical Centre” “The New Croft Medical Centre” “6 village’s Medical centre”. The Group all agree it would be nice to keep The Croft in the name somewhere, as this has always been used and would be consistent. KA to feed this information back to management.

KA discusses the idea of renting rooms out to various clinicians i.e physiotherapists, Aesthetics, There will be more space for more Dr’s. The group move on to discuss better signage along the road as currently easy to pass by. Electric points for charging electric vehicles at a cost to the person using, using the ground around back for developing a park for children to play in with a buzzer given to the parent to call in when time to see clinician, Having the Practice become a hub of the community. Have a hairdresser on site, community/charity run café, and Nail bar, sensory room.

Member of group ask about the current site being sold. KA confirms is being sold but not to a developer. Also asked if Meadowcroft is to be used still, KA cannot clarify this at this moment.

KA has stated that as much as possible we will be applying for relevant grants to assist with the setup of new practice. KA confirms there will be 29 consulting rooms, 3 waiting rooms, 1 for the on the day patients, 1 for nurses and then 1 upstairs for the Dr’s. 2 lifts as well as stairs

IT subgroup

This has previously been spoken about with KA keen to pursue to help with the social media, propaganda, pushing the surgery forward, a few of the group feel communication is becoming an issue again recently and feel a monthly newsletter, up to date website, social media would help but mainly to ensure communication for all ages and abilities is supplied at all times. Others within the group disagree and feel communication is brilliant at the moment.

Group start to discuss 27 min wait in queue for telephone at 8am, needing more call handlers as the practice gets more lines. Calling at the correct time rather than in the morning if not an urgent issue needing on the day response. Call back system, helping other people understand/ learn to use the apps/ Econsults. KA pulls the meeting back into line. By agreeing communication for all ages need to be as simple as possible and in place.

Sustainability project

KA confirms funding revenues are already in place but wants to make the whole team aware of the greener view of the new project, KA mentions the placing of EV chargers –could be funded along with solar panels a landscape gardener to be brought on board but possibly using local residential homes to keep uptake of garden area or volunteers from the community?


KA hands out flyers of equipment needed and explains the beds are about £750 each, currently we on have enough for 7 consulting rooms and more is going to be needed but the budget for equipment is low. KA suggest an idea stolen from another surgery to fundraise for these items either by cash or looking at the possibility of card transactions, also offering the possibility of being able to buy outright if somebody would like to and a plaque of recognition would be placed on site. KA confirms fundraising would be for equipment only. “we need to fundraise on all levels” various suggestions made in the meeting were just giving/ go fund me page, lottery funding, can a charity be set up for Friends of The Croft Practice? PD suggest a lottery funding application made for £10.000 or less is fairly easy to do- PD happy to look into. KA suggest a small sub group set up to look into? Buy a brick/ paving slab to be laid on site, KA worries about patient confidentiality re this. A monthly lottery within the surgery?

KA mentions James Roberts from the Arun based Governors group happy to come and discuss options with the group. KA suggest all google who he is for a better understanding of his work.

Question asked- Will the practice be a non-profit making service, run as a trust? KA states yes will be non-profit KA then goes on to explain cost breakdown per patient. Confirming we have 11,500 patients at the moment with this expected to rise to 25,000 within 5 years. The possibility of a community minibus is raised to help patients attend appointments.

Question asked- is there an increasing bureaucracy for GP’s and management as having to do more for funding per patient? KA- kind of but its work we should have been doing anyway as a way of generating income. If patients are reviewed regularly there should be less demand for on the day services because monitoring is already in place. The possibility of sub groups to assist with some of the admin work is raised KA agrees volunteers for things like flu clinics is a definite possibility

Future of the group

KA asked the group what the purpose of the group is? The discussion is then raised of Friends of the croft, communication, fundraising, voice of the patients and feedback to management, better care experience for all patients.

Previous special measures is brought up, new patient within the group discuss how the surgery is great, don’t have an issue. It is discussed how new staff are now in place, better training, more appointments , phone lines are better and in general there has been a massive improvement in the past 2 years.

C L-S tells the group that he had a recent interaction with the surgery, no issues at all and the issue was dealt with swiftly, CL-S moves on to state that TS was the person on reception and how impressed he was “excellent service”.

Any other business

KA opens the discussion to each individual around the table as follows- JS – defence service and struggling to access, KA gives a brief explanation on what this means, veterans and their family can follow a different path way for referrals etc and often seen quicker, by accessing the correct website, signing up, providing ID KA instructs TS to call JS to book an appointment on KA’s return to help sort out access.

Lyn- Saturdays apt to be for all to access and the website to be altered to reflect this including that booking appointments via the apps and using econsults. Also a how to guide on how to sign up on the apps.

Pharmacy currently answer the phone as The Croft which is leaving patients confused as not actually part of the croft practice. Can the pharmacy be changed?

KA confirms not at the moment but within the new build the layout will be as such that the pharmacy will have its own entrance way.

MH and MH – want to note they are terribly impressed with the practice, only been with the practice a couple of months but really good service.

How many patents are on the books that are never seen? KA states, never been asked that question and cannot answer on this occasion, but new patients are now offered new patient checks within a few weeks of registering meaning all are seen from the beginning, this allows us to catch anything immediately as well as ensure all correct follow ups etc are in place.

LB- nothing to add but happy to volunteer if/ when needed.

KJ- Needed a BP appointment recently didn’t want to waste an appointment how else can a BP be taken? Reply- purchase a home monitor, ask at a pharmacy to take the BP, TS plenty of BP appointments though to be used. Also wants to add that those staff members who go the extra mile are a credit to the surgery and makes the croft outstanding.

AS- Asks if well man screening occurs? TS responds that health checks are in place 3 yearly for all patients over 45 but if any patient feels they have a change in themselves or symptoms then the receptionists will book an appointment with KA or a GP for discussion and next steps.

Next Meeting

All agreeing next meeting in 6 weeks which will be February 2024, final date to be announced. KA has asked all to think about best timing for all i.e. afternoons, evenings? Discussion about limiting the number of attendees in future occurs, 248 members currently on data base, most just wanting to be kept updated but smaller sub groups to be of use.