NEARLY 900 people have completed a questionnaire giving their views about the future of the Accrington Victoria Hospital walk-in centre.
Patients had been urged to fill in the survey before the October 30 deadline by the East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as part of an initial engagement exercise.
Campaigners have also raised more than 5,000 signatures to keep the service, used by more than 100 users a day, open.
The Observer has joined forces with Hyndburn Council to help save the centre which is under threat of closure after a £1m overspend last year.
A public vigil will be held on Saturday, November 9 between 6pm and 7pm at the hospital to protest against any possible service closure.
Deputy Council leader has praised the response from residents and urged people to attend the vigil.
She said: “We have got more than 5,000 signatures so far on the petition and I really want to thank everyone that's signed it. The response has been brilliant.
“More than 700 questionnaires have been filled in by people visiting the walk-in centre and we are currently looking at and analysing those responses before the Council meeting next week.
We are making a lot of noises and they are sitting up and taking notice of the campaign and what we are doing.
“It is sending out a huge message that the people in Accrington want to retain this service. Please come down and support the vigil this weekend.”
Dr Di van Ruitenbeek, chair of the CCG, said they are 'pleased' with the amount of survey responses.
She said: “I would like to re-emphasise that we do recognise the usefulness and local benefits of the walk-in service.
“I recently spent some time in the walk-in centre myself, talking to patients who were attending for treatment and also to the GPs and other staff who work there.
“It was clear from all of the people I spoke to that local people really value the walk in service and also that they have concerns and anxieties about its future.
“We are actively listening to the views of local people and we will take these very seriously into account when developing options for the future of walk in services in Hyndburn.”
The CCG said they are still in the process of analysing the responses and the views of local people will be taken into account when making a decision.
Representatives will also attend an extraordinary meeting of the full council on Thursday, November 14 at 7pm to discuss the closure threat.
To sign the petition visit: http://chn.ge/GRm8aR.
Send us your pictures of the public vigil.