Boost for campaign to save Bart's

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The Independent Online
Hopes of saving the 900-year-old St Bartholomew's Hospital in London from closure rose yesterday when a High Court judge gave the go- ahead for a legal challenge.

The decision was a first-round victory for Monica Willan, 81, who brought the case. She lives close to the hospital and regularly receives treatment there for arthritis. Mr Justice Sedley said there was an arguable case that the consultation process leading up to the closure decision was flawed.

Mrs Willan, in court with friends who also use the hospital, said they were all "delighted" to have won permission to bring a case, although they were philosophical about her chances of rescuing Bart's. The same judge had last year given her leave to challenge the closure of the hospital's accident and emergency department, but that case ended in failure.

Mrs Willan, who lives in sheltered housing on a Peabody Trust estate, was given leave for a judicial review hearing into the closure decision.